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To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise

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To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In the decades after World War II, evangelical Christianity nourished America’s devotion to free markets, free trade, and free enterprise. The history of Wal-Mart uncovers a complex network that united Sun Belt entrepreneurs, evangelical employees, Christian business students, overseas missionaries, and free-market activists. Through the stories of people linked by the world’s largest corporation, Bethany Moreton shows how a Christian service ethos powered capitalism at home and abroad.

While industrial America was built by and for the urban North, rural Southerners comprised much of the labor, management, and consumers in the postwar service sector that raised the Sun Belt to national influence. These newcomers to the economic stage put down the plough to take up the bar-code scanner without ever passing through the assembly line. Industrial culture had been urban, modernist, sometimes radical, often Catholic and Jewish, and self-consciously international. Post-industrial culture, in contrast, spoke of Jesus with a drawl and of unions with a sneer, sang about Momma and the flag, and preached salvation in this world and the next.

This extraordinary biography of Wal-Mart’s world shows how a Christian pro-business movement grew from the bottom up as well as the top down, bolstering an economic vision that sanctifies corporate globalization.

The author has assigned her royalties and subsidiary earnings to Interfaith Worker Justice (www.iwj.org) and its local affiliate in Athens, GA, the Economic Justice Coalition (www.econjustice.org).

Review:

"[A] probing and nuanced study of the latter-day evangelical romance with free-market capitalism....Moreton does an excellent job of digging beneath Wal-Mart's carefully imagineered vision of the rural good life." Maud Newton, Bookforum

Review:

"Fascinating....With verve and clarity, Moreton offers something more distinctive: a compelling explanation of how Wal-Mart captured the hearts and pocketbooks, of so many Americans." St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Synopsis:

In the decades after World War II, evangelical Christianity nourished America’s devotion to free markets, free trade, and free enterprise. The history of Wal-Mart uncovers a complex network that united Sun Belt entrepreneurs, evangelical employees, Christian business students, overseas missionaries, and free-market activists. Through the stories of people linked by the world’s largest corporation, Bethany Moreton shows how a Christian service ethos powered capitalism at home and abroad.

While industrial America was built by and for the urban North, rural Southerners comprised much of the labor, management, and consumers in the postwar service sector that raised the Sun Belt to national influence. These newcomers to the economic stage put down the plough to take up the bar-code scanner without ever passing through the assembly line. Industrial culture had been urban, modernist, sometimes radical, often Catholic and Jewish, and self-consciously international. Post-industrial culture, in contrast, spoke of Jesus with a drawl and of unions with a sneer, sang about Momma and the flag, and preached salvation in this world and the next.

This extraordinary biography of Wal-Mart’s world shows how a Christian pro-business movement grew from the bottom up as well as the top down, bolstering an economic vision that sanctifies corporate globalization.

About the Author

Bethany Moreton is Assistant Professor of History and Women's Studies at the University of Georgia.

Table of Contents

    Prologue: From Populists to Wal-Mart Moms
  1. Our Fathers’ America
  2. The Birth of Wal-Mart
  3. Wal-Mart Country
  4. The Family in the Store
  5. Service Work and the Service Ethos
  6. Revival in the Aisles
  7. Servants unto Servants
  8. Making Christian Businessmen
  9. Evangelizing for Free Enterprise
  10. Students in Free Enterprise
  11. “Students Changing the World”
  12. On a Mission: The Walton International Scholarship Program
  13. Selling Free Trade
  • Epilogue: A Perfect Storm
  • Abbreviations
  • Notes
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674033221
Subtitle:
The Making of Christian Free Enterprise
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Author:
Moreton, Bethany
Subject:
Economic History
Subject:
United States - 21st Century
Subject:
Christian Life - General
Subject:
Christianity
Subject:
Business
Subject:
Business -- Religious aspects -- Christianity.
Subject:
Wal-Mart (Firm)
Subject:
Business-History and Biography
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Publication Date:
May 2009
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
12 halftones, 1 map
Pages:
392
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.125 in

Related Subjects

Business » Business Profiles

To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 392 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674033221 Reviews:
"Review" by , "[A] probing and nuanced study of the latter-day evangelical romance with free-market capitalism....Moreton does an excellent job of digging beneath Wal-Mart's carefully imagineered vision of the rural good life."
"Review" by , "Fascinating....With verve and clarity, Moreton offers something more distinctive: a compelling explanation of how Wal-Mart captured the hearts and pocketbooks, of so many Americans."
"Synopsis" by , In the decades after World War II, evangelical Christianity nourished America’s devotion to free markets, free trade, and free enterprise. The history of Wal-Mart uncovers a complex network that united Sun Belt entrepreneurs, evangelical employees, Christian business students, overseas missionaries, and free-market activists. Through the stories of people linked by the world’s largest corporation, Bethany Moreton shows how a Christian service ethos powered capitalism at home and abroad.

While industrial America was built by and for the urban North, rural Southerners comprised much of the labor, management, and consumers in the postwar service sector that raised the Sun Belt to national influence. These newcomers to the economic stage put down the plough to take up the bar-code scanner without ever passing through the assembly line. Industrial culture had been urban, modernist, sometimes radical, often Catholic and Jewish, and self-consciously international. Post-industrial culture, in contrast, spoke of Jesus with a drawl and of unions with a sneer, sang about Momma and the flag, and preached salvation in this world and the next.

This extraordinary biography of Wal-Mart’s world shows how a Christian pro-business movement grew from the bottom up as well as the top down, bolstering an economic vision that sanctifies corporate globalization.

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