Consumer Credit and Credit Assessment

Authored by: José Ossandón

The Routledge Handbook of Critical Finance Studies

Print publication date:  September  2020
Online publication date:  September  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138079816
eBook ISBN: 9781315114255
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter makes two main points. First, it introduces a particular sociological approach to the study of consumer credit. This approach is termed a pragmatic sociology and it consists of research that makes the practices of consumer credit its object of study. Second, it is argued that the inspection of consumer credit practices opens a new analytical angle to the understanding of how finance assembles collective formations. The chapter has three main sections. The first part introduces the concept of pragmatic sociology. The second part reviews recent sociological research on consumer credit. The review, instead of mapping research on all forms of credit practices, focuses in particular on recent studies of credit assessment. The third part explains how the study of practices of credit assessment provides an analytical vantage point to the explanation of how new social formations are assembled with credit and finance more generally.

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