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Orenstein, Dara

Out of Stock

The Warehouse in the History of Capitalism


    137,95 € / $157.50 / £124.50*

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    November 2019
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    Aims and Scope

    In Out of Stock, Dara Orenstein delivers a nuanced, ambitious, and engrossing account of that most generic and underappreciated site in the history of American commerce and industry: the warehouse, and all its many permutations. She traces the progression from the bonded warehouse of the nineteenth century to today’s foreign-trade zones, enclaves where goods are processed while simultaneously inside the United States and outside US customs territory. Foreign-trade zones channel jobs to American workers by converting American cities into international ports, and to understand them, Orenstein tells us, we should look at them in the simplest of terms: as warehouses. Going further, Orenstein contends that these zones—nearly 800 of which are scattered across the United States—are emblematic of how warehouses have begun to supplant factories on the terrain of logistics. In the age of Amazon and Walmart, circulation is so crucial to how and where goods are produced that it is increasingly inseparable from production, such that warehouses rank as some of the most pivotal spaces of global capitalism.

    Drawing from cultural geography, cultural history, and political economy, and vividly documented with photos, ads, maps, and other ephemera, Out of Stock nimbly demonstrates the centrality of warehouses for corporations, workers, cities, and empires.


    352 pages
    93 halftones
    Professional and scholarly;

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    Dara Orenstein is assistant professor of American studies at George Washington University.

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