Bingo Capitalism: the Law and Political Economy of Everyday Gambling

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Bingo Capitalism uses bingo—a female-dominated and notoriously self-effacing game—to think differently about regulation and political economy. A key objective is to make bingo, as lens, more central to our debates about the regulation of economy and society. Part I sets the scene, responding to the query: why bingo? Part II explores the legal and political history of bingo. Part III analyses the regulation of people, while Part IV examines the regulation of products, places, and technologies. In so doing, the book uses bingo to better understand the role of the state in shaping the classed and gendered interrelation between diverse economies, especially in relation to non-commercial and commercial gambling. Bingo Capitalism offers the first sociolegal account of bingo as a globally significant and immensely popular pastime, centring implementation experiences alongside the broader political, economic, and social context to legislative reform. While considering the perspectives of lawmakers, who have debated what the game reflects about the nation and its economy, the book also centres the experiences of those who work in, and play, bingo, to trace how gambling law and regulation impact people in everyday life. The book identifies the central historical role of non-commercial, mutual aid play to UK gambling law and policy, and traces the ongoing relevance of this realm for current debates about the interrelation between capitalist and more-than-capitalist everyday economies. Bingo Capitalism also uses bingo as a case study of research into the gendered nature of regulation, showing how gender shapes, and is shaped by, diverse state rules on gambling.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages396
ISBN (Print)9780198845225
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sept 2019


  • bingo
  • regulation
  • gender
  • class
  • political economy
  • gambling
  • mutual aid
  • sociological studies


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