Sycamore's Reviews > The Worldly Philosophers

The Worldly Philosophers by Robert L. Heilbroner
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Nov 28, 07

Read in January, 2007

beautiful history of economics. economic theory explained through the human beings that invented it. not ideological separation but the natural flow from Adam Smith to Karl Marx. This is about how human beings have decided to arrange themselves - how we as a group feed ourselves, relate to each other, how we built everything. thats what economics is. in some ways its awful of course, in some ways beautiful. Everyone ought to learn something about these things because if we dont we will not know how to build paradise. i really want to build paradise.

the book describes the people who made the theories that made or at least explained society. Adam Smith was absent minded; was once walking and so deep in conversation he fell into a pit. Karl Marx was grouchy and antisocial, he used to insult his admirers and was constantly bumming money off Friedrich Engels. Thorstein Veblen was a shifty, hobbitlike man who was chronically chased by women. John Stuart Mill fell in love with a married woman. They did not touch for twenty years until her husband's death. Then they got married. Economists are neat.

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