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Fear and institutions

Wrenn, Mary


Mary Wrenn
Senior Lecturer in Economics


Fear allowed early humans to adapt, evolve, and survive. When humans moved into settled communities, with more advanced means of production, the nature of fear-much like the nature of social relationships-changed. Once the means of social reproduction were secured, fear became less necessary as a survival instinct, and more useful as a heuristic device. Fear cannot be characterized as an essentially socially constructed phenomenon, or as the self-contained, individualized response to internalized traumas. The growth and nature of fear must be studied as a process that develops under its own inertia and as a phenomenon that is both shaped by and shapes its institutional setting. Fear should be understood as both structurally determined and socially transformative. This research examines fear, specifically, as it relates to neoliberalism and institutions. © 2013, Journal of Economic Issues/Association for Evolutionary Economics.


Wrenn, M. (2013). Fear and institutions. Journal of Economic Issues, 47(2), 383-390.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 1, 2013
Online Publication Date Dec 23, 2014
Publication Date Jun 1, 2013
Journal Journal of Economic Issues
Print ISSN 0021-3624
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 47
Issue 2
Pages 383-390
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Economic Issues on 23rd December 2014, available online:


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