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Originally published in 1989. In this book Nicholas Xenos argues that the assumption that scarcity is a universal human condition is far from universal but rather a product of western influence. Informed by the work of Baudrillard, Bourdieu, Girard, and Sahlins, this historical narrative of scarcity incorporates interpretations of texts and practices from eighteenth-century London to contemporary New York. Lucid and elegant in style, Scarcity and Modernity will appear to those with interests in social and political thought and cultural criticism.