Thursday, September 25, 2014

Gavin Kennedy — Reading Snippets Of Wealth Of Nations Can Be Misleading Out Of Context

Adam Smith did not try “to show that, in a free market, an individual pursuing his own self-interest tends to also promote the good of his community as a whole through a principle that he called “‘the invisible hand’.  He had no such a “principle” called “the invisible hand”.  Moreover, Smith did not “coin”  the “invisible hand” neither as a metaphor nor  as a “principle”.  The metaphor was in fairly common use in the 17th and 18th centuries, mainly, though not solely in theological contexts.  It also appeared in Shakespeare, poetry, general fiction (Defoe), political speeches and philosophy.
Adam Smith's Lost Legacy
Gavin Kennedy | retired Professor of Defence Finance in the Department of Accounting and Finance at Heriot-Watt University and Professor of Economics at Strathclyde University

No comments: