For Profit: A History of Corporations

For Profit Cover
$32.00
Primary Author: 
Magnuson, William
Binding Type: 
Hardcover
Publication Date: 
Tuesday, November 8, 2022
ISBN: 
9781541601567
List price: $32.00

A history of how corporate innovation has shaped society, from ancient Rome to Silicon Valley

From legacy manufacturers to emerging tech giants, corporations wield significant power over our lives, our economy, and our politics. Some celebrate them as engines of progress and prosperity. Others argue that they recklessly pursue profit at the expense of us all.

In For Profit, law professor William Magnuson reveals that both visions contain an element of truth. The story of the corporation is a human story, about a diverse group of merchants, bankers, and investors that have over time come to shape the landscape of our modern economy.  Its central characters include both the brave, powerful, and ingenious and the conniving, fraudulent, and vicious. At times, these characters have been one and the same.

Yet as Magnuson shows, while corporations haven’t always behaved admirably, their purpose is a noble one. From their beginnings in the Roman Republic, corporations have been designed to promote the common good. By recapturing this spirit of civic virtue, For Profit argues, corporations can help craft a society in which all of us—not just shareholders—benefit from the profits of enterprise.