September 27, 2021

Mark Koyama on Dressing Codes and Elite Competition

Sumptuary Laws were regulations that aimed to restrict excessiveness in the consumption of certain personal items of daily life, especially in food and clothes. . While these types of laws had existed in Europe since at least the Greeks their presence spiked in the late middle ages. Yet, by the 19th century, they had disappeared. What explains their appearance in disappearance? Mark talks to us about it, and how it relates to political economy problems of competition between elites.

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