Finance and Society

A painting of a courtyard known as the "Old Exchange" in Amsterdam.

"The Courtyard of the Beurs in Amsterdam," 1653, by Dutch painter Emanuel de Witte. This course offers students an introduction to finance through historical and social-scientific perspectives. (This image is in the public domain.)


MIT Course Number


As Taught In

Spring 2016



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Course Description

Course Description

This course provides students with a broad historical and social-scientific introduction to a central aspect of modern economic life: Finance. By drawing upon a variety of disciplinary perspectives from the humanities and social sciences, the course offers a multi-dimentional picture of finance, not only as an economic phenomenon, but as a political, cultural, intellectual, material, and technological one. The course offers an introduction to foundational financial concepts and technologies, and will help students understand finance as a complex and multifaceted phenomenon. This course also provides students with the opportunity to improve skills in written communication, and to learn tools for historical analysis and textual interpretation.

Related Content

William Deringer. STS.002 Finance and Society. Spring 2016. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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