On Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations by Samuel Fleischacker
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On Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations"
By Samuel Fleischacker

On Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations"

A Philosophical Companion

By (author) See other recent books by Samuel Fleischacker
Format: Paperback

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On Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations by Samuel Fleischacker

Book Awards

  • Winner of American Psychological Foundation Joseph B. Gittler Award 2009.

Book Description

Adam Smith was a philosopher before he ever wrote about economics, yet until now there has never been a philosophical commentary on the Wealth of Nations. Samuel Fleischacker suggests that Smith's vastly influential treatise on economics can be better understood if placed in the light of his epistemology, philosophy of science, and moral theory. He lays out the relevance of these aspects of Smith's thought to specific themes in the Wealth of Nations, arguing, among other things, that Smith regards social science as an extension of common sense rather than as a discipline to be approached mathematically, that he has moral as well as pragmatic reasons for approving of capitalism, and that he has an unusually strong belief in human equality that leads him to anticipate, if not quite endorse, the modern doctrine of distributive justice. Fleischacker also places Smith's views in relation to the work of his contemporaries, especially his teacher Francis Hutcheson and friend David Hume, and draws out consequences of Smith's thought for present-day political and philosophical debates. The Companion is divided into five general sections, which can be read independently of one another. It contains an index that points to commentary on specific passages in Wealth of Nations. Written in an approachable style befitting Smith's own clear yet finely honed rhetoric, it is intended for professional philosophers and political economists as well as those coming to Smith for the first time.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780691123905
ISBN-10: 069112390X
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 22mm)
Pages: 352
Imprint: Princeton University Press
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publish Date: 22-Aug-2005
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions...


Books By Author Samuel Fleischacker

Good and the Good Book by Samuel Fleischacker Good and the Good Book, Hardback (July 2015)

Religions that center around a revelation-or a 'good book', which is seen as God's word-are widely regarded as irrational and dangerous, based on outdated science and conducive to illiberal, inhumane moral attitudes. Samuel Fleischacker offers a powerful defense of revealed religion, and reconciles it with science and liberal morality.

Philosophy of Adam Smith by Samuel Fleischacker Philosophy of Adam Smith, Paperback (June 2014)

Leading scholars explore Adam Smith's understanding of sympathy, resentment and moral judgment, his attitude towards aesthetics and theology, as well as the nature of intrinsic value and the merits of cosmopolitanism.

Divine Teaching and the Way of the World by Samuel Fleischacker Divine Teaching and the Way of the World, Paperback (April 2013)

Samuel Fleischacker offers a defense of 'revealed religion' - religions that regard a certain text or teaching as wholly authoritative over one's life. By reconciling it with secular cognitive and moral practices that allow people to work together regardless of religious difference, he shows how these two worldviews can be brought together.

What is Enlightenment? by Samuel Fleischacker What is Enlightenment?, Hardback (February 2013)

In this text, Samuel Fleischacker first explains and assesses Kant's philosophy of Enlightenment. He then considers critics of Kant's views - from Burke and Hegel to Horkheimer and Adorno - and figures he regards as having extended Kant's notion of Enlightenment, such as Feuerbach, Marx, Habermas, Foucault, and Rawls.

» View all books by Samuel Fleischacker

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Author Biography - Samuel Fleischacker

Samuel Fleischacker is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Illinois, Chicago. His books include "A Short History of Distributive"

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