Consecrating the elite: culturally embedding the financial market in the City of London

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Simpson explores how financial elites in the City of London interact with the City’s topographical, technological, and social environment to actively (re)produce a dominant cultural system of competitive market behaviour. The chapter begins by sketching the topographical and material environment of the City of London, to show how the extraordinary wealth generated by the financial services industry is etched into the landscape—a physical manifestation of market dominance. Drawing on interview data with financial elites, it then presents the ways in which this institutional and material topography enshrine a distinctive image of success, leading market actors to internalise qualities viewed as characteristic of the ‘perfect market’—speed, intelligence, and discipline—thereby reproducing ‘market reality’.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFrom financial crisis to social change
Subtitle of host publicationtowards alternative horizons
EditorsTorsten Geelan, Marcos González Hernando, Peter William Walsh
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9783319706009
ISBN (Print)9783319705996
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • City of London
  • financial elites
  • markets
  • ethnography
  • Bourdieu


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