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Philosophy of markets

The very excellent Lisa Herzog interviewed here. H/T to Eric Schliesser. The cliché is that Smith is a “negative liberty” guy and Hegel a “positive liberty” guy. In fact, both have very nuanced accounts of how different dimensions of freedom are realized in a modern society; the freedom to do what you want with your property…

Smith on Smith

Last but by no means least here is an extract from Vernon’s Smith’s foreword. This book is a welcome addition to the resurgent scholarly and practical interest in Adam Smith’s contributions to market economics and its antecedents in the social order of human culture. In Smith, propriety concerned the rules that govern human sociability by…

Smith, Justice and the Scope of the Political

The intro to the final chapter — by Craig Smith There was a time when many commentators thought that there was a problem with Adam Smith. The tendency to read Smith’s thought as marred by supposed tensions between the ‘sympathy’ of The Theory of Moral Sentiments (TMS) and the ‘selfishness’ of The Wealth of Nations…

The Spontaneous Order and the Family

The intro to Lauren Hall’s chapter. Smith scholarship is conflicted on whether the apparent conflict between self-interest in the Wealth of Nations (WN) and sympathy in the Theory of Moral Sentiments (TMS) indicates an intractable problem or is merely the result of a misunderstanding of Smith’s overall system. This chapter is written as a response both…

The ‘Invisible Hand’ Phenomenon in Philosophy and Economics

Here is the intro to Gavin Kennedy’s chapter. This chapter discusses Adam Smith’s rhetorical use of the ‘invisible hand’ in the context of his teachings on metaphors as figures of speech in his lectures on Rhetoric (Edinburgh, 1748-51; Glasgow, 1752-64 (LRBL). After Smith died (1790), a strikingly long-period of silence about his three references to…