The city metaphor and pluralism in Genesis: Institutional economics between pre-modern and modern urbanism
preprintposted on 14.05.2013, 12:55 by Sigmund Wagner-Tsukamoto
The paper traces changes to the city metaphor in Genesis. Special attention has been given to pluralism as an interaction condition. A key thesis here is that ‘the city’ described in Genesis ultimately reveals a modern understanding of urbanism, with pluralism as a key interaction condition and urban features emerging, such as crowded, large-scale group interactions; bureaucracy; technical order; industrial contexts; etc. The paper projects the analysis of the city metaphor and pluralism to questions of the institutional economic organization of societal interactions: Did the parallel rise of the modern city and pluralism in Genesis reflect the switch from low level economized modes of institutional organization to highly economized ones? The paper examines various cost effects in this regard, i.e. attack/defense costs and transaction costs, which could explain in economic terms a switch in the micro-organization of the society depicted in Genesis, at the city level.