Douglass North develops an analytical framework for explaining the ways in which institutions and institutional change affect the performance of economies, both at a given time and over time. Institutions exist, he argues, due to the uncertainties involved in human interaction; they are the constraints devised to structure that interaction.
In this classic work of economic history and social theory, Karl Polanyi analyzes the economic and social changes brought about by the "great transformation" of the Industrial Revolution. His analysis explains not only the deficiencies of the self-regulating market, but the potentially dire social consequences of untempered market capitalism.
Professor Postan's work on the social and economic history of the Middle Ages has had an enormous influence upon the study of the subject. Twenty-two essays are gathered together into two volumes. Previously published elsewhere, many in obscure places, over a period from 1928 to 1972, they are still greatly used and referred to today; their appearance in this more accessible form will be warmly welcomed by a wide range of students and scholars in all branches of medieval and economic history as well as by social scientists and economists generally.
A collection of fourteen essays in which Professor Postan draws together for the first time his contributions to the debate on historical method, and discusses from a variety of different angles, the inter-relation of history and the social sciences.
David Ricardo (1772-1823), the founder of the classical school of economics, applied the deductive logic of the philosopher James Mill to the analysis of monetary principles. His chief work, Principles of Political Economy and Taxation, first published in 1817, had a profound impact and remains one of the groundworks of modern economics.
Samuelson's text was first published in 1948, and it immediately became the authority for the principles of economics courses. The book continues to be the standard-bearer for principles courses, and this revision continues to be a clear, accurate, and interesting introduction to modern economics principles.
By focusing on the human side as well as the intellectual dimensions of how economists work and think, this collection of interviews with top economists of the 20th century becomes a startling and lively introduction to the modern world of macroeconomics.
To those who know Adam Smith principally by his classic treatise on economics, The Wealth of Nations, this earlier work may come as a revelation. Smith is often misrepresented in the public imagination as a cold, calculating rationalist espousing the pursuit of self-interest in the marketplace of laissez-faire capitalism, regardless of the human cost. The Theory of Moral Sentiments, however, clearly demonstrates that besides mundane economic pursuits, Smith was just as interested, if not more so, in the capacity of people to bestow and to esteem benevolence, and to strive for virtue even while they are pursuing their own self-interest.
Introduction by Robert Reich Commentary by R. H. Campbell and A. S. Skinner Adam Smith's masterpiece, first published in 1776, is the foundation of modern economic thought and remains the single most important account of the rise of, and the principles behind, modern capitalism. Written in clear and incisive prose, The Wealth of Nations articulates the concepts indispensable to an understanding of contemporary society; and Robert Reich's Introduction both clarifies Smith's analyses and illuminates his overall relevance to the world in which we live.