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Cornell University School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions


Lawrence Glickman

Lawrence Glickman is a professor in the Department of History whose focus is post-Civil War American history, with special interests in labor history, cultural history, and the history of consumer society. He holds a PhD from the University of California–Berkeley and a bachelor's degree from Princeton.

Before coming to Cornell, Larry taught at the University of South Carolina from 1992 to 2014. His first book, A Living Wage: American Workers and the Making of Consumer Society (Cornell University Press, 1997) examines the role that workers played in the development of consumer society in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His edited anthology, Consumer Society in American History: A Reader (Cornell University Press, 1999) is designed to introduce students to key readings in the field. His most recent book, Buying Power: A History of Consumer Activism in America (University of Chicago Press, 2009), traces changes and continuities in the long-lasting but relatively unexamined American political tradition of boycotting and buycoating.

Larry is currently researching and writing a book tentatively titled The Free Enterprise System: A Cultural History, which explores the complicated history of this phrase. He writes, "I am excited about this project because I believe it sheds historical light on our present political condition and because it is always fun to examine the history of a concept that seems familiar and obvious but which is, upon close examination, complex. I have several other research projects on the back burner, including a study of trans-Atlantic radicalism in the nineteenth century, sports radicalism in the 1960s and 1970s, and the transformation of American liberalism from the 1870s through the 1940s."


In this C-SPAN video, Larry discusses the difference between buying power and political power in America.