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Look Inside The Economics of the British Stage 1800–1914

The Economics of the British Stage 1800–1914


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  • Date Published: June 2007
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521036856

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About the Authors
  • During the nineteenth century, British theatre developed into an industry with considerable importance in the economy, diversified by whole new forms of entertainment - first music hall then cinema - evolving alongside the dramatic stage. This comprehensive study examines the theatre's growth from an economic perspective. Tracy Davis reflects the debates of economic theorists from Adam Smith to Alfred Marshall to investigate three key areas: the state's role in protecting theatre; the factors affecting the success or failure of theatre companies; and how theatre came to be regarded as one of the 'service industries'. By grounding debates about subsidization and the economic viability of the live arts in an era predating government funding, Davis sheds light on the history of cultural policy for the arts in Britain. Her book will interest scholars across a range of disciplines - theatre, social history, economics, gender studies and the sociology of culture.

    • A comprehensive study of economic theory in relation to nineteenth-century British theatre
    • Broad interdisciplinary appeal - theatre, social history, economics, sociology of culture, gender studies
    • Provides an alternate perspective on the history of cultural policy for the arts in Britain
    Read more


    • Winner of the George Freedley Memorial Award 2001, presented by the Theatre Library Association

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2007
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521036856
    • length: 528 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 153 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.786kg
    • contains: 17 b/w illus. 29 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    List of figures
    Note to readers
    Part I. Competition: Theatre and Laissez-Faire:
    1. Monopoly and free trade: fair and unfair competition
    2. Property and the stakes of private interest
    3. Industrial regulation and safety
    4. Marginal economics, national interest and the half-naked woman
    Part II. Ownership and Entrepreneurialism:
    5. Opportunity, finance and failure
    6. Profit
    7. Business structures
    8. Gender, 'gentlemanly capitalism' and the wo-manager
    Part III. Industrialization, Commodity Capitalism and Theatre Production Systems:
    9. Labour and labourers
    10. Theatre as cultural capital
    Appendix: 'To the public. Charles Kemble's mercies or the '999' increasing'

  • Author

    Tracy C. Davis, Northwestern University, Illinois


    • Winner of the George Freedley Memorial Award 2001, presented by the Theatre Library Association

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