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Author Frankel, Oz, 1958-

Title States of inquiry : social investigations and print culture in nineteenth-century Britain and the United States / Oz Frankel
Published Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006
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Description 1 online resource (x, 370 pages) : illustrations
Series New studies in American intellectual and cultural history
New studies in American intellectual and cultural history.
Contents Introduction -- Monuments in print -- Blue books and the market of information -- The battle of the books -- The bee in the book -- The culture of the social fact -- Scenes of commission -- Facts speak for themselves -- Can freedmen be citizens? -- Totem envy -- Archives of Indian knowledge -- The purloined Indian -- Conclusion -- Notes -- Essay on sources
Summary In the mid-nineteenth century, American and British governments marched with great fanfare into the marketplace of knowledge and publishing. British royal commissions of inquiry, inspectorates, and parliamentary committees conducted famous social inquiries into child labor, poverty, housing, and factories. The American federal government studied Indian tribes, explored the West, and investigated the condition of the South during and after the Civil War. Performing, printing, and then circulating these studies, government established an economy of exchange with its diverse constituencies. In this medium, which Frankel terms "print statism," not only tangible objects such as reports and books but knowledge itself changed hands. As participants, citizens assumed the standing of informants and readers. Even as policy investigations and official reportage became a distinctive feature of the modern governing process, buttressing the claim of the state to represent its populace, government discovered an unintended consequence: it could exercise only limited control over the process of inquiry, the behavior of its emissaries as investigators or authors, and the fate of official reports once issued and widely circulated. This study contributes to current debates over knowledge, print culture, and the growth of the state as well as the nature and history of the "public sphere." It interweaves innovative, theoretical discussions into meticulous, historical analysis
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 311-357) and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Government publications -- Great Britain -- History -- 19th century.
Government publications -- United States -- History -- 19th century.
Printing, Public -- Great Britain -- History -- 19th century.
Printing, Public -- United States -- History -- 19th century.
Social surveys -- Great Britain -- History -- 19th century.
Social surveys -- United States -- History -- 19th century.
Great Britain -- Population -- Statistical methods.
United States -- Population -- Statistical methods.
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2005027400
ISBN 0801883407
0801888778 (electronic bk.)
9780801883408
9780801888779 (electronic bk.)