Over at New Republic, Jen Doll just reviewed a book about the creation of the board game Monopoly. The review itself is worth a read, and not only because it’s called “An Anti-Capitalist Woman Invented Monopoly And A Man Got All The Credit”: Doll delves into the game’s beginnings at the hands of a woman named Lizzie Magie in 1903. Magie was a disciple of the progressive politician and economist Henry George, whom Doll describes as “an outspoken and influential tax reformer who advocated policies that would keep more money in the hands of the poor and working class.” Magie created something called the Landlord’s Game, which was meant to demonstrate the consequences of the turn-of-the-century practice of land-grabbing. The book is The Monopolists: Obsession, Fury, And The Scandal Behind The World’s Favorite Board Game by Mary Pilon, and we’re adding it to our reading list.
You can read more about the book, and how Monopoly eventually became the exact opposite of what it was intended, at New Republic.