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Cities of Heat and Light: Domesticating Gas and Electricity in Urban America

Author(s):Rose, Mark
Reviewer(s):Castaneda, Christopher J.

CITIES OF LIGHT AND HEAT: DOMESTICATING GAS AND ELECTRICITY IN URBAN AMERICA. By Mark H. Rose. (University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1995). 201 pp. + xviii, bib. essay, and index. $34.50. Reviewed by Christopher J. Castaneda, California State University, Sacramento.

By relating the development of household gas and electric utilization to theories of technology and society, Mark Rose tests a long-standing debate. Simply put, does technology shape society or does society shape technology? Rose provides a careful analysis of the gas and electric business to show that a complex interplay of social, political, and economic contexts shapes technological development.

Rose focuses his study on the urban spaces of Denver and Kansas City through the year 1940. After 1940, he generalizes on a nationwide basis although he presents much more material relating to the earlier period in the two cities. Rose’s involvement with this topic began in the mid-1970s, when he, in collaboration with John G. Clark, initiated research on the topic of energy choices in these cities while teaching at the University of Kansas. He noted the many differences between Denver and Kansas City, but the author was struck by the triumph of “urban politics, middle-class tastes, and the social-spatial composition” in both. (p. 11) In some respects, the similarities between these cities may limit our ability to extend their specific experiences to those of east and west coast locations; Rose’s observations are particularly cogent for the midwestern experience.

Certainly, in these cities as well as others in the U.S., early gas and electric firms promoted their services through a variety of methods in order to develop a customer base. It gradually became clear that electricity and gas were simply cleaner and easier to use than other domestic fuels such as coal. But what exactly was the larger social process through which the gas and electric business developed? This is the question Rose seeks to answer.

Rose tells us that “agents of diffusion” were responsible for distributing both the ideas about the new technology and the appliances themselves. These agents included teachers, architects, homebuilders, and salesmen. The most important of these were salesmen who worked for the utility entrepreneur, Henry L. Doherty. Doherty rose to prominence in his industry as an innovator in devising rates and promotional activities. His three part flexible rate structure encouraged gas consumption while his well-trained, clean, polite, and prompt salesmen sought to represent those same qualities in the electric or gas service they were selling. Rose’s account of the Doherty System is interesting and important for it brings forth the sales techniques of an early industry which offers new material for inquiry.

Doherty, later the head of Cities Service Company, was in many ways like Samuel Insull; both men controlled vast public utility holding company empires. Insull is more well known – in part because of the work of Harold Platt and Forrest McDonald – and also because of the infamous collapse of his empire. But Insull operated in Chicago, and Doherty was strong in the central United States including Kansas City and Denver. Thus, Rose has provided a valuable contribution by examining a part of the career of another public utility captain who controlled the gas and electric business in a large part of the United States.

Rose examines other less prominent though effective agents of diffusion including J. C. Nichols and Roy G. Munroe. Munroe never advanced beyond a mid-level salesmen, albeit a successful one, while Nichols became a prominent developer. Both promoted gas and electric technologies from different perspectives but to the same end. Other players in the scheme included teachers. In vocational schools, students studied the gas and/or electric facilities used to light and heat their own buildings. Many of these students would later find employment with the local utility firm. Public schools served indirectly as models for the ideal of gas and electric technology. Codes required a high level of illumination and ventilation in classrooms in order to provide a healthful and supportive learning environment for teachers and students.

In the home, appliances relieved the drudgery and heavier labor involved in domestic housekeeping, though they often created new chores, while other new technologies provided benefits to men in their work places. Ideally, irons, refrigerators, stoves, air conditioners, and heaters provided people with the ability to begin to regulate their own built environments. Rose shows how these appliances, which tended to benefit women and housekeepers, were marketed to increase the more feminine qualities of “comfort, convenience, and cleanliness” of the home. (p. xv)

The very brief analysis of the post-1940 era is not as convincing as that of the earlier one. It is essentially a cursory review of the continuing growth and promotion of gas and electric power utilization through the mid-1980s. The complex regulatory, marketing, and technological developments of the last fifty years, though, would provide fertile ground for an in-depth analysis of the social history of the light and power business during that period.

This work does elevate the scholarship of the U.S. gas and electric business. In this regard, Rose jousts with Alfred D. Chandler’s statement in The Visible Hand that electric, gas, and trolley systems of the 1920s “remained smaller and less complex than the older railroad systems.” (p. 204) Certainly, the hundreds of thousands of diverse customers dealt with on a regular basis by gas and electric employees, varying rate schedules, and a multi- level public policy suggests a higher level of complexity in those newer urban technologies than Chandler suggests.

There are integral parts of this story that deserve additional attention. The author effectively shows how coal stoves, for example, were displaced by cleaner and more easily maintained gas stoves. While Rose does distinguish between natural gas and manufactured coal gas, he might have delved further into the transition from manufactured gas to natural gas; the natural variety was significantly cleaner and more hygienic than the coal and oil based variety. How did gas companies promote this intra- industry fuel shift to their customers? In addition, did utilities market gas and electric service directly to other groups besides upper-income white families.

The author accurately describes Henry L. Doherty as a master of promotion, public relations, sales techniques, and rate structures. But Doherty may not have consciously sought to adapt the gas industry to the urban environment as much as he simply desired to find the best way to gain control over the markets which he claimed. Although this book is not about the process of bringing fuel to the cities (as opposed to how it is used in the city), Doherty was a ruthless competitor who sought to destroy and/or acquire those who tried to supply fuel to the markets he called his own. Thus, Doherty’s insight into marketing was probably influenced less by a desire to adapt his business to the consumer than a drive to show the consumer how to benefit from his product. Although the book tends to downplay the capitalistic tendencies of men like Doherty, it does describe well the social outcome of their work.

This book cuts across the disciplines of urban history, energy history, and the history of technology. It draws upon a wide variety of sources including corporate records and trade journals. The mix of biography, technical data, and descriptions of urban development make for a well composed and well written book which provides a very useful foray into the technological evolution of the 20th century home. Rose has succeeded in showing how social, political, and economic forces shaped the gas and electric business in Kansas City and Denver, and how these forces worked to domesticate energy nationwide.

Christopher J. Castaneda California State University, Sacramento cjc@saclink1.csus.edu

Subject(s):Transport and Distribution, Energy, and Other Services
Geographic Area(s):North America
Time Period(s):20th Century: WWII and post-WWII

Rowntree and the Marketing Revolution, 1862-1969

Author(s):Fitzgerald, Robert
Reviewer(s):Wilson, John F.

Book review by JOHN F. WILSON (MFSSTJW@fs1.art.man.ac.uk)(University of Manchester) of:

ROWNTREE AND THE MARKETING REVOLUTION, 1862-1969 by Robert Fitzgerald Cambridge University Press, 1995, pp.xix + 737 (Illus.) ISBN 0 521 43512 9 (hardback); Price stlg75 (US$150).

A book replete with mentions of childhood favourites as `Kit Kat’, `Aero’ and `Smarties’ is bound to raise some interest within even the most cynical of business historians who regard commissioned case- studies with great suspicion, but to be fair to Dr. Fitzgerald this is much more than a broad survey of a famous company history laced with fancy illustrations of old publicity material. Indeed, the analysis is well-founded on a series of key themes which are amply addressed through the use of extensive primary records, detailed references to other secondary sources, and even economic theory (in particular transaction cost theory).

The main theme, evident from the book’s title, is how the famous York confectionary firm of Rowntree developed its marketing techniques, and it is interesting to note that only after the family manager- owners had been replaced in 1931 that professional executives were able to introduce new ideas about the Rowntrees had been sceptical. Marketing weaknesses had actually been one of the main reasons why since its foundation in 1862 Joseph Rowntree’s firm had remained a relatively small-scale producer compared with its major rival, Cadbury, but under George Harris from 1931 major progress was made as the firm woke up to the possibilities in the techniques so successfully employed by other chocolate makers. This supports the criticisms of family management made by A.D. Chandler, although in tackling the issue Dr. Fitzgerald is more concerned with emphasising how up to 1931 Rowntree was actually a well-managed firm with an adequate organization.

In addressing the general debate about British business organization, Dr. Fitzgerald pays particular attention to another theme of the book, he existence of a `chocolate’ corporate culture which extended to the other two large firms, Cadbury and Fry. This culture had two principal characteristics, efficient production and management, and service to the community, and building on his previous publications Dr. Fitzgerald provides illuminating evidence of how from the 1890s Seebohm Rowntree (as the country’s first labour director) was able to create and nurture an internal labour market using welfarist strategies. Of course, Rowntree and Cadbury were well known as paternalistic employers, but as Dr. Fitzgerlad explains such labels are misleading, and greater concern ought to be paid to how firms matched the needs of efficient production and management with labour market vagaries and trade union influence. The sections on how Rowntree introduced scientific management deserve careful reading but anybody interested in such issues, because they provide incisive material for a frank assessment of labour management trends in the pre-1939 era.

A third prominent theme of this history is the development of multinational strategies, particularly under the chairmanship of Lloyd Owen after 1957, but in fact originating in the interwar years. The termination of price-fixing agreements by government action and intensifying competition spurred Rowntree into the creation of many `little Yorks’ in the 1950s and 1960s, and separate chapters are provided to study the ventures in the USA, Europe and South Africa. This reveals how Rowntree evolved from a family firm into a major global player, and for this reason by 1969 a merger with another British rival, Mackintosh, had been arranged in order to strengthen its base.

There is consequently much to be gained from reading this commissioned history, and clearly Dr. Fitzgerald has not suffered unduly from company or family interference in his research. At the same time, it is only fair to mention several weaknesses which might detract from the book, in particular the failure to provide an extensive analysis of the abundant financial material to which he has evidently had access. For example, vital indicators like the return on capital employed have not been calculated, and the reader is left to work out the full implications of the long statistical appendices. This would have been particularly helpful when analyzing the success of multinational strategies, when after 1948 consolidated balance sheets had to be produced. The 1969 merger is also inadequately assessed, and one might have expected a more detailed analysis of the general business scene as another reason why the two firms merged. Likewise, the company’s final decades, as well as its demise, when acquired in a `dawn raid’ by Nestle in April 1988, could have been more thoroughly examined, but then after over 600 pages Dr. Fitzgerald might have been exhausted. Finally, while reference to such techniques as transaction cost analysis has been made, no quantitative work is conducted to explain whether Rowntree achieved its aims in reducing any of its costs as a result of multinationalisation.

Having noted these relatively minor quibbles, it is important to reiterate the general view, that this is a most impressive business history which deserves a wide audience. Dr. Fitzgerald must be credited with a significant achievement in harmonizing the case-study treatment with a range of other issues, and reading lists would be the poorer if they did not include references to the book under any of its major themes.

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Subject(s):Business History
Geographic Area(s):North America
Time Period(s):20th Century: WWII and post-WWII

The Gas Station in America

Author(s):Jakle, John A.
Sculle, Kieth A.
Reviewer(s):Dicke, Tom

THE GAS STATION IN AMERICA. By John A. Jakle & Kieth A. Sculle. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994. 272 pp. $32.95, ISBN 0-8018-4723-0). Reviewed by Tom Dicke, Southwest Missouri State University. tsd870f@nic.smsu.edu

This is a unique study of the gas station in popular culture because Jakle, a geographer, and Sculle, a historian, focus on the typical rather than the unusual. The authors have no unifying thesis or theme; their goal is to look at the gas station from a variety of perspectives. Many of these views, and the insights that come from them, will probably be new to historians. Readers with an interest in the interplay between popular culture, corporate image, and architectural form will find parts of this study useful and fascinating. The book does, however, have two noticeable weaknesses: the authors do not adequately consider the impact of economic factors in station design and location, and they only partially integrate the material they present. Most of the chapters could stand alone, and in fact, four of the book’s nine chapters are based on previously published articles.

The book is overly compartmentalized but its overall organization is logical. Jakle and Sculle first argue the importance of the gas station as a cultural icon, discuss the relevant literature, and define the “place-produce-packaging” scheme they believe has been the driving force in station design since the 1920s.

They justify the gas station as an important cultural symbol partly because of Americans’ fascination with the automobile and partly as a matter of sheer numbers. Roughly 200,000 gasoline stations were scattered over the landscape during the thirty years prior to the oil shocks of 1970s. Well over 100,000 still operate.

The most unique feature of this section is the fairly extensive biographies, written in the third person, that chronicle the authors’ long standing interest in gasoline stations and their professional training and influences.

Jakle and Sculle’s description of the concept of “place- produce-packaging,” is valid. Essentially they argue that the push for uniformity came from roadside sellers’ desire to use everything on the lot from the buildings and their contents to the employees to create a distinctive corporate image. Their discussion of the literature is enlightening, particularly for business historians, because they focus on how these three- dimensional advertisements were perceived by the motoring public. They discuss ideas on the social meaning of the roadside as interpreted in the fields of architectural studies, cultural geography and popular culture.

The authors also trace major trends in gasoline retailing from the 1920s to the early 1990s including brief biographies of the major retailers and the fluctuations of their market areas. Readers already familiar with the oil industry will find little new here. Those in other disciplines should find this section very helpful.

The real heart of the book comes in the three chapters dealing with gas station design. The first is an overview of dominant types of station design from the 1910s through the 1990s. Popularity was determined by examining the NATIONAL PETROLEUM NEWS for illustrations and advertisements of various station types. Gasoline was originally vended most commonly through curbside pumps, often operated as a sideline to an exiting business. By 1920 the true gasoline station, usually disguised as a house to better fit residential environments, dominated. During the 1930s the trend shifted more to the utilitarian box with bays, a move that continued until the 1980s when the booth style and then the convenience store began to dominate new construction. As with the section on gasoline retailing, many readers of this list will be on familiar ground here. The authors use secondary sources or periodicals exclusively. You get a clear description of what happened but little insight into why. Was, for example, station location shifting from residential to commercial zones, thus making the utilitarian box a better fit with its environment? Did changes in housing styles such as the fading of the bungalow and ascendancy of the mass produced ranch increase the popularity of the oblong box by making it appear more houselike? What role did the “place-product-package” concept play in the shift in styles?

The answers to some of these questions are suggested in the detailed case studies of the design process at a large corporation and two regional marketers. Here the collaboration between disciplines works best. The description of the origins and evolution of Pure Oil’s famous “English cottage” design from the mid-1920s through the end of World War Two is absorbing. The authors’ use of primary materials, including interviews with C.A. Petersen, the originator of the design, is first-rate. Readers see clearly Pure’s intent to use the gas station to create a distinctive and calculated corporate image. To explain how and why people were so taken with the little cottage-like stations Jakle and Sculle enter the realms of cultural geography, popular culture, and psychology.

The authors then shift their attentions to two regional marketers, Barkhausen Oil Company of Green Bay, Wisconsin during the 1920s and Quality Oil Company of Winston-Salem during the 1930s to see how local independents attempted to create a distinctive identity for and through their stations. Again the reader sees the gas station from both sides of the pumps. Although less extensive than their treatment of Pure Oil, this is still a detailed look at an overlooked aspect of gasoline marketing.

The last view Jakle and Sculle offer is of the shift from horses to automobiles in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois and the evolution of a commercial strip on one of the streets connecting the two towns. Here, as throughout the book, the authors’ observations are detailed and informative. The extensive use of maps makes it easy to visualize the changes brought by the automobile. The downtowns and connecting strip were in a continual process of re-creation and it is intriguing to see ninety years of change condensed into 20 some pages. As with most of the other chapters, material is presented from the vantage point of the motorist. The ebb and flow of gas stations and other businesses across the landscape is clearly shown but only partly explained. The authors, for example, ignore the oil shocks of the 1970s, the decline of the routine maintenance and repair business, and the rise of self-service when discussing the decline in the number of service stations and the rise of the convenience store.

Overall, the book is lavishly illustrated with over 150 photographs, maps, floor plans, or drawings. The prose is generally in the somewhat clumsy style that may someday be known as “late twentieth century academic,” but Jakle and Sculle resist the temptation to become bogged down in jargon. This book is a true interdisciplinary study that could be profitable read and understood by those in several disciplines.

Reviewed by Tom Dicke tsd870f@nic.smsu.edu

Subject(s):Transport and Distribution, Energy, and Other Services
Geographic Area(s):North America
Time Period(s):20th Century: WWII and post-WWII

Elusive Union: The Process of Economic and Monetary Union in Europe

Author(s):Dyson, Kenneth
Reviewer(s):Fuller, Elaine

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Review of ELUSIVE UNION THE PROCESS OF ECONOMIC AND MONETARY UNION IN EUROPE by Kenneth Dyson (Longman, London and New York, 1994) 370 pages

Reviewed by Elaine Fuller Ph.D. student in Economics and Historical Studies New School for Social Research Center for Studies of Social Change 64 University Place New York City 10003 tel: 212/533-9341 fax: 212/477-5409 e-mail: fuller@cssc.newschool.edu

This review has three sections: Argument of Book, Organization of Book, A Critique

I. Argument of Book

In this important book on the political move towards monetary union by which a number of European nations would use one circulating and reserve currency, Professor Dyson takes on a difficult task; his subject matter is a complex long-term political process concerning economic and monetary issues, yet these issues themselves are not his focus. It is, rather, with questions about how the policy process has been shaped and guided: who are the actors with agenda-setting and veto power; what kinds of bargaining relations exist among them; who establishes the `rules of the game’; how do we explain the emergence and development of the policy process. He wants to restore political reasons to their proper place in his explanatory story, something that is all-too-often completely ignored in studies of economic and financial issues.

Dyson centers his analysis in an institutional and game theory approach which seems quite suitable to the subject matter. His central argument is that the policy process establishing the existing European Monetary System and the goal of creating a full-fledged European Monetary Union is best understood as composed of a distinct set of interdependent bargaining relations and institutional rules of the game, embedded in a framework of structures that they have a limited, and fluctuating, capacity to influence. There is a complex interaction between the structural dynamics of the international political economy and the internal dynamics of the EMS and EMU policy process.

Furthermore, the nature of the European integration process is shaped by the will and the capability of the central actors involved, which can be fully appreciated only as a set of interlocking bargaining relations that, in turn, interact with certain key rules of the game. All of these — actors, bargaining relations and rules — are embedded in five general sources of structural power — world currency relations, `fundamentals’ of each country, and trade interdependence. (This statement of the central argument is distilled from various pages in the introductory Chapter 1.)

Interaction among these sources of structural power generates a lack of consistent control by any one actor. There is no hegemon, to use an older term. This is the essence of Dyson’s argument of the hollow core in the EMU policy process. Furthermore, EMU remains a fragile prospect because it rests on decisions to pursue monetary union prior to having in place a strong unified political union to give it necessary support and establish the rules of the game. In this `two-level’ policy process (the separation of activities toward political union and toward monetary union) monetary union is being pursued in a highly elitist fashion by financial technicians, central bankers and their international political cohorts. Thus, it generates resistance among people in various countries who cannot see it as part of a known political process. Money, Dyson tells us, has not only an economic and technical face, but a cultural and political face. (p. 3 – 5) It symbolizes national identity and sovereignty.

II. Organization of Book

Dyson introduces the theme of monetary union requiring prior political authority in his introductory chapter (Ch.2) on five historical monetary unions. Two of them, the Federal Reserve System of the United States and the German centralized system are strong and successful national monetary unions; that is, political union preceded monetary union. The other three were international — the Latin Monetary Union of 1865, the international gold standard and the Bretton Woods System — which fell apart when the hegemonic nation at their center began to lose control.

The second history chapter takes us through the activities around monetary coordination in Europe after the Second World War. It briefly summarizes the European Payments Union of the 1950s, the institutions and programs of the European Economic Community of the 1960s, responses to the disintegration of the Bretton Woods system (the `snake’ by which EEC country currencies were to float together, or rather, float with the D-Mark; the `snake in the tunnel’ by which they were to float together around a dollar parity with fluctuations kept within a narrower band than that allowed other currencies in the IMF) and finally to the dollar crisis of the late 1970s which fostered the birth of the Exchange Rate System in which outlines of the original `snake’ could still be discerned.

It is only at Chapter 4 that we arrive at the heart of the book’s subject: an historical narrative, thick with detail, which takes us through the bargaining relations and configurations of power in two periods of major change — 1978-79 and 1988-91. The first period saw creation of the European Monetary System in 1979 ,rapid implementation of a European Monetary Union with a single currency, which would replace the Exchange Rate Mechanism in which member countries must try to maintain set exchange rate parities but also negotiate changes in them as frequently as necessary. (Ch.5)

We get a good sense of the importance of central banks; of Britain’s loss of power; of the relevance of the right people at the right place at the right time (and the wrong time); of the centrality of Franco-German bargaining; and, most of all, of the centrality of Germany. Even that is more complex because one of the most central bargaining fronts is between the German government and the independent Bundesbank. The Bundesbank always thinks in terms of what is good for Germany according to its convervative banking philosophy. In this sense, it is not an international player but a national player thrust onto the international stage with a lead role it does not want.

The German government, on the other hand, is led by men who experienced the Second World War and must carry with them their country’s horrible past in the mid-twentieth century. Taking a lead in forming the European Monetary System as a response to American `abdication’ of international responsibility (with the 1978 dollar crisis and, indeed, earlier with the demise of Bretton Woods) would bring some redemption in the role of a constructive and good international partner.

Underlying these political considerations, however, is the economic reality that the postwar German economy has been the engine of growth for Europe. This has been the primary asymmetry in the `economic fundamentals’ which spawned asymmetries in currency strength and bargaining power. The German government and the Bundesbank could not always have things their own way but nothing could happen without their cooperation. As Dyson puts it “the one veto position that really mattered” and “the pivot around which a balance had to be found.” (p.155)

Yet because of its past, Germany must express its power through international cooperation rather than acting openly as the hegemon of Europe, while other countries, particularly France, are concerned to curtail German power without destroying that international cooperation.

Dyson follows Part I on historical perspectives with Part II on theoretical perspectives which focuses on the sources of structural power: the `two-level’ policy process; the D-Mark as anchor currency; the ascendance of monetarism over the kind of expansionary policies known as Keynesianism; changes in financial markets, in production and distribution and employment (the economic fundamentals), in trade patterns.

III. A Critique

It is these mostly economic issues in Part II that this book; a reader with economist’s eyes who kept feeling there was something crucial missing from the historical narrative of the first 175 pages. Admittedly, Elusive Unionis about a political process and as such, it highlights a general failing of economists who take specific political configurations as givens when, in fact, contingent policy processes concerning economic activity need to become variables. Yet, at the same time, the book is about political processes concerning economic organization and activity and, therefore, cannot help but deal with economics if it is to be comprehensive. But then, how to model such a complexity or even to incorporate the political and economic in the same narrative? It is not easy; Dyson’s not unreasonable solution is a book with two parts, but this tends, I think, to weaken his project by muting the economic debates and questions he rightly considers the key ones. They are in there but they tend to get lost; they don’t stand out clearly as they should.

It would have been better, I think, to have tried to integrate political process and economic structure and to have presented at the beginning a clear schema of various relevant historical economic debates: the economic and political defferences between fixed vs. flexible vs. freely floating exchange rates and why the latter has rarely been supported by anyone but economic theorists; who generally does and does not benefit by exchange controls and capital controls; how exchange rates and particular adjustment mechanisms for curing balance-of-payments deficits (but not surpluses) are connected to questions of sufficient liquidity for full employment economic growth and inflation; what it would mean to different sectors of society in each country to force convergence among them of money supply changes, interest rates, inflation rates, current-account balances, and especially fiscal policies and deficit spending decisions. Then tracing such issues through the political narrative would give it clearer economic meaning.

Although almost all these economic questions are historic issues, they don’t directly appear in the initial narrative on historic monetary unions because of its focus on the necessity of prior political union. This important but narrow focus leaves this introductory chapter seeming both rather superficial and yet too much at the same time.

For example, on p.32 Dyson refers to obstacles “all the more apparent when one considers the difficulties of moving from political to monetary union in relatively homogeneous cultural areas like Germany and the United States.” But was cultural homogeneity the dominant dynamic involved in struggles around establishing central control over monetary activity? Which were the economic forces in late 19th and early 20th century USA that supported and that opposed a central bank? Who would benefit from decentralized and unregulated currency? What about the argument that money creation based on decentralized banking may have been unstable but nevertheless supplied the necessary liquidity for economic growth?

Yet, on the other hand, Germany had a high level of growth in the late 19th and early 20th century with a highly centralized banking system, yet how independent was the Reichsbank from government control? This question of the independence of central banks from government directives geared to particular political interests could have used a more systematic historical presentation, especially given the Bundesbank’s importance in the process toward a European Monetary Union. This should have included the history leading up to the Bundesbank Act of 1957 in which it is explicitly stated that the central bank shall be independent of instructions from the federal government, a history which included loss of independence under the Nazis.

Nevertheless, Elusive Union is necessary reading for anyone seriously interested in the prospects of European Union and a basis for further discussion and debate. I found myself imagining how interesting a debate between Kenneth Dyson and Alan Milward might be. Milward argued in The Rescue of the European Nation (1992) that participation in the European Community was often a means for nation-states to reinforce national interests rather than subsuming them into common interests of a more unified Europe. On several occasions, Dyson makes reference to some process that might fit this interpretation — France, for instance, coming around to supporting the idea of EMU in the late 1980s because of learning the political lesson “that the EMS involved an asymmetry of power that imposed undue costs on some countries and that could be corrected only by shifting authority to the EC level.” (p.113) But, he makes only one reference to Milward’s book and implies that a stage in the EC when “traditional patterns of contending states whose interests were defined by domestic political and economic constituencies” (p.92) may now have been superceded by the renewed launch toward an European Moneatry Union as part of European Union — unless it turns out to be forever elusive.

Werner von Siemens: Inventor and International Entrepreneur

Author(s):Feldenkirchen, Wilfried
Reviewer(s):Feldenkirchen, Wilfried

A Twentieth-Century Man?

Review of Werner von Siemens: Inventor and International Entrepreneur

by Wilfried Feldenkirchen. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1994.

xxv + 203 Pp. $19.95 hardbound; $12.50 softbound

Subject(s):History of Technology, including Technological Change
Geographic Area(s):Europe
Time Period(s):19th Century