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Abstract

This thesis argues that the dotcom bubble is a struggle between four conflicting forms of rationality. Each waxes and wanes in a different pattern, influencing agents in the financial market in their decision-making. Extreme booms and busts in the markets are produced by a disparity of rationality, not the absence of it.

The dotcom bubble is an interesting case to illustrate a temporary tilt between what Barnes and MacKenzie call S-type (social kind) terms and N-like (natural kind alike) terms, and the presence of strong feedback loops of the social kind. Despite the opposing momentum between S-type terms and N-like terms, financial markets in modernity are able to bridge their gap by forming an artificial hybrid structure, and serve to amalgamate both terms into the common, indistinguishable sign of $.


qlG L.L.Siu@sms.ed.ac.uk
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