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Cheap StreetLondon's street markets and the cultures of informality, c. 1850-1939$
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Victoria Kelley

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780719099229

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.7765/9781526131706

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 21 October 2021

Things

Things

Chapter:
(p.48) 2 Things
Source:
Cheap Street
Author(s):

Victoria Kelley

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7765/9781526131706.00009

This chapter moves from legal to economic informality, analysing the things bought and sold in the London street markets, and examining their role in feeding and supplying the growing city from the middle of the nineteenth century until the outbreak of World War II. It investigates the mechanisms via which a substantial proportion of the food brought to the city found its way to consumers via the informal economy of street selling, and it examines how non-food goods sold in the London street markets were sourced within London’s producer economy. It argues that the informality of the street markets was closely aligned with London’s complex and dynamic networks of small-scale, workshop-based manufacture, characterised by economic historians as ‘flexible specialisation’. Price and quality are key themes that run through the chapter.

Keywords:   food, consumer goods, supply and demand, price, quality, flexible specialisation

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