Markets as Monsters

  • Virgil Henry Storr
  • Ginny Seung Choi


This chapter reviews and critically engages a variety of moral criticisms of the market. We argue that a common thread running through all of these arguments is the notion that markets are morally corrupting. This common concern – what we call the central moral criticism – is often discussed in the language of moral philosophy, and the most damning critiques along these lines are deontological claims that do not allow for the possibility that market exchange can be moral. But, we argue, this criticism of markets is at root an empirical, rather than a philosophical, claim. As such, we can evaluate whether or not it is true that markets are likely to be morally corrupting using our theoretical understanding of how markets can and should work, and on the basis of evidence regarding how markets do work.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Virgil Henry Storr
    • 1
  • Ginny Seung Choi
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of EconomicsGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA
  2. 2.The Mercatus Center at George Mason UniversityArlingtonUSA

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