CfP: Commercial Surveillance

25 05 2018

Organizational History Network

Seeing Like a Capitalist:

Histories of Commercial Surveillance in America

 A Conference at the Hagley Museum and Library

Wilmington, Delaware, November 8-9, 2018

The history of surveillance is often associated with the history of the state. However, commercial organizations in the United States – from insurance companies to audience rating firms and database marketers, to corporate personnel and auditing departments – also exercise power over citizens through systems of identification, classification, and monitoring.  The history of commercial surveillance thus intersects with key issues concerning the history of privacy, information, social sorting and discrimination, and technologies of discipline and control.

For a conference sponsored by the Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society on November 8-9, 2018, we invite proposals that explore the history of commercial surveillance in the United States, from settlement to the present. These (non-state) surveillance activities might be found in a variety of business…

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