Episode 9: The Wealth Of Nations

A radical departure from our usual fictional fare this fortnight, as we instead read one of the most influential non-fiction works of modern times. ‘An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations’ was written at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution that changed both Britain and the rest of the world. 

The importance of the book is without question – but is it still worth reading? And did Smith actually preach the libertarianism that his name is synonymous with today? Join Fred and Dave to find out…

Read the book at: https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/3300

 

Further reading

Those with a real interest in economics and associated subjects will know better than us which of the thousands of scholarly works on Smith are worth reading – if you have any particular suggestions, let us know in the comments below.

For a more general background, check out the extremely detailed Wikipedia entry and the Encyclopedia Britannica.

 

If you are interested in the details of Smith’s life and beliefs, the ‘Primer’ by Eamonn Butler, Director of the Adam Smith Institute is well worth a read.

Or for a more critical, left-leaning approach to Smith read pieces on his modern-day relevance in the Guardian, the New Statesman and from LSE university.

And for balance, a right-wing view from Standpoint and a piece from the Economist, a magazine with a decidedly Smithian worldivew

Want to listen to more about the Wealth of Nations? Start with the 2015 episode devoted to the book from the always excellent In Our Time, the podcast Fred would most like to host.

Finally for a less serious view of Smith, check out why he has been called the first self-help guru. And have you noticed him on your £20 notes?.

Oh, and Smith would probably have appreciated the irony of stack ’em high, sell ’em cheap businesses now resident where he wrote the Wealth of Nations.

 

NEXT EPISODE: “THE AMATEUR CRACKSMAN”

DOWNLOAD AT: https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/706

 

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