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The Ghost Story, 1840–1920A Cultural History$
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Andrew Smith

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780719074462

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719074462.001.0001

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Seeing the spectre: an economic theory of the ghost story

Seeing the spectre: an economic theory of the ghost story

(p.10) 1 Seeing the spectre: an economic theory of the ghost story
The Ghost Story, 1840–1920

Andrew Smith

Manchester University Press

This chapter examines a theory of spectrality that relates it to a specific field of economics. It shows that the connections between economics and the ghostly relate to the perception of paper money, at a time when such promissory notes were redeemed for gold. It reveals that paper money was previously considered as spectral money (not ‘real’), and like ghosts had a liminal presence. This chapter also aims to present a new theorisation of the spectral that allows a re-reading of the economic contexts of the nineteenth century.

Keywords:   theory of spectrality, economics, paper money, spectral money, promissory notes, liminal presence, economic contexts, spectral

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