In a book review of Jacob Goldstein’s Money: The True Story of a Made-Up Thing given by Richard Davies for the New York Times, Davies describes currency to be one of strangest “inventions” within our society today. Though the dollar may be so trusted as to seem unshakable, he posits that money is definitionally “a confidence trick”, one “that promises the holder nothing but more paper money.” Davies goes on to describe this contradiction between modern society’s perception of money and its abstract nature as the driving force behind the book. According to him, Goldstein disputes the “cold and mathematical” image that money conjures in many people’s heads, instead describing it to be “a made-up thing, a shared fiction”. In his summation of how this central thread of the “unalterably social” nature of money develops throughout the book, Davies remarks on how currency, once represented with items made of precious metals and materials, now would be more aptly called a “tool”. Having been entirely divorced from any concrete source of value, currency is defined by its one and only use, that being to exchange it for something else.

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