New from Brill’s Historical Materialism series: The Making of Capitalism in France

10th Jul 2019

The Making of Capitalism in France: Class Structures, Economic Development, the State and the Formation of the French Working Class, 1750-1914

Author: Xavier Lafrance

Very few authors have addressed the origins of capitalism in France as the emergence of a distinct form of historical society, premised on a new configuration of social power, rather than as an extension of commercial activities liberated from feudal obstacles. Lafrance offers the first thorough historical analysis of the origins of capitalist social property relations in France from a ‘political Marxist’ or ( Capital-centric Marxist) perspective. Putting emphasis on the role of the state, The Making of Capitalism in France shows how the capitalist system was first imported into this country in an industrial form, and considerably later than is usually assumed. This work demonstrates that the French Revolution was not capitalist, and in fact consolidated customary regulations that formed the bedrock of the formation of the working class.

Xavier Lafrance, Ph.D. (2013), York University, is Professor of political science at the Université du Québec à Montréal. With Charles Post, he is the editor of Case Studies in the Origins of Capitalism(Palgrave 2018).