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Henry George and the Crisis of Inequality – Progress and Poverty in the Gilded Age - Columbia Scholarship Online
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Henry George and the Crisis of Inequality: Progress and Poverty in the Gilded Age

Edward O'Donnell


The explosion of American industrial output and national wealth at the end of the nineteenth century was matched by a troubling rise in poverty and worker unrest. As politicians and intellectuals fought over who to blame for this crisis, Henry George (1839–1897) published Progress and Poverty (1879), a radical critique of laissez-faire capitalism and its threat to the nation's republican traditions. His book, which became a surprise best-seller, offered a popular, provocative solution: a single tax on land values. George's writings and years of social activism almost won him the mayor's seat i ... More

Keywords: worker unrest, Progress and Poverty, Henry George, laissez-faire capitalism, New York City, progressivism, Gilded Age, modern capitalism, inequality, labor movement

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780231120005
Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015 DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231120005.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Edward O'Donnell, author
College of the Holy Cross