The Routledge Companion to Accounting History: 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

The Routledge Companion to Accounting History

1st Edition

Edited by John Richard Edwards, Stephen P. Walker


622 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2008-07-21
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The Routledge Companion to Accounting History shows how the seemingly innocuous practice of accounting has pervaded human existence in fascinating ways at numerous times and places; from ancient civilisations to the modern day, and from the personal to the political.

Placing the history of accounting in context with other fields of study, the collection gives invaluable insights to subjects such as the rise of capitalism, the control of labour, gender and family relationships, racial exploitation, the functioning of the state, and the pursuit of military conflict. An engaging and comprehensive overview also examining geographical differences, this Companion is split into key sections, which explore:

  • changing technologies used to represent financial and other data
  • historical development of accounting theory and practice
  • accounting institutions and those who perform accounting
  • accountancy and the economy
  • accounting, society, and culture
  • the role of accounting in the government, protection and financing of states including chapters on the important role played by accountancy in religious organizations, a review of how the discipline is portrayed in fine art and popular culture, and analysis of sharp practice and corporate scandals.

The Routledge Companion to Accounting History has a breadth of coverage that is unmatched in this growing area of study. Bringing together leading writers in the field, this is an essential reference work for any student of accounting, business and management, and history.


'This book provides a comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date overview of what is known about accounting’s past. To their great credit, the editors and contributors have also created a work that testifies to the importance of that research.' Accounting & Business Review

'In this first book of its kind, Edwards and Walker bring together leading writers and accounting educators to provide a historical survey of the evolution of the accounting profession and its wide-ranging influence on society and culture. … The breadth of coverage and the integration of accounting into other fields of study make the book an invaluable resource and a premier reference. Highly recommended.' -- CHOICE (April 2009, Vol. 46)

Table of Contents

Introduction: Synthesis and Engagement (John Richard Edwards and Stephen P. Walker) Part 1: The Discipline 1. Structures, Territories and Tribes (Stephen P. Walker) 2. Historiography (Christopher J. Napier) 3. Subjects, Sources and Dissemination (John Richard Edwards) Part 2: Technologies 4. Ancient Accounting (Salvador Carmona and Mahmoud Ezzamel) 5. Bookkeeping (David Oldroyd and Alisdair Dobie) 6. Mechanisation and Computerisation (Charles W. Wootton and Barbara E. Kemmerer) Part 3: Theory and Practice 7. Financial Accounting Theory (Thomas A. Lee) 8. Financial Accounting Practice (Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh) 9. Management Accounting: Theory and Practice (Richard Fleischman) 10. Auditing (Josephine Maltby) Part 4: Institutions 11. Professionalisation (Chris Poullas) 12. Practitioners, Work and Firms (David J. Cooper and Keith Robson) 13. Education (Fiona Anderson-Gough) 14. Regulation (Alan J. Richardson) Part 5: Economy 15. Capitalism (Steven Toms) 16. National Accounting (Ignace de Beelde) 17. Finance and Financial Institutions (Janette Rutterford) 18. Railroads (Dale L. Flesher and Gary J. Previts) 19. Scandals (Thomas A. Lee, Frank L. Clarke and Graeme W. Dean) Part 6: Society and Culture 20. Gender (Rihab Khalifa and Linda M. Kirkham) 21. Race and Ethnicity (Marcia Annisette) 22. Indigenous Peoples and Colonialism (Susan Greer and Dean Neu) 23. Emancipation (Sonja Gallhofer and Jim Haslam) 24. Religion (Salvador Carmona and Mahmoud Ezzamel) 25. Creative Arts (Sam McKinstry) Part 7: Polity 26. The State (Philip Colquhoun) 27. Military (Warwick Funnell) 28. Taxation (Margaret Lamb)

About the Editors

John Richard Edwards is a Professor of Accounting at Cardiff Business School, UK. He is a regular contributor to international refereed journals, and the author of A History of Financial Accounting (Routledge, 1989).

Stephen P. Walker is a Professor of Accounting at Cardiff Business School, UK. He is a former editor of Accounting Historians Journal and President of the Academy of Accounting Historians. His publications concern accounting histories of professionalisation, gender, social control and identity.

About the Series

Routledge Companions in Business, Management and Accounting

Routledge Companions in Business, Management and Accounting are prestige reference works which provide an overview of a whole subject area or sub-discipline. These books survey the state of the discipline including emerging and cutting edge areas. Providing a comprehensive, up to date, definitive work of reference, Routledge Companions can be cited as an authoritative source on the subject.

Edited by an array of highly regarded scholars, these volumes also benefit from teams of contributors which reflect an international range of perspectives. Individually, Routledge Companions in Business, Management and Accounting provide an impactful one-stop-shop resource for each theme covered. Collectively, they represent a comprehensive learning and research resource for researchers, postgraduate students and reflective practitioners.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Accounting / General