Known for its clarity,
comprehensiveness, and balance, the latest edition of A History of
Economic Theory and Method continues that tradition of excellence.
Ekelund and Hébert’s survey provides historical and international
contexts for how economic models have served social needs throughout the
centuries—beginning with the ancient Greeks through the present time.
The authors not only trace ideas that have persisted but skillfully
demonstrate that past, discredited ideas also have a way of spawning
critical thinking and encouraging new directions in economic analysis.
Coverage that distinguishes the Sixth Edition from its predecessors
includes a detailed analysis of economic solutions by John Stuart Mill
and Edwin Chadwick to problems raised by the Industrial Revolution; the
role of psychology and “experiments” in understanding demand and
consumer behavior; discussions of modern economic theory as it
interrelates with other social sciences; and a close look at the
historical development of the critical role of entrepreneurship, both in
its productive and unproductive variants. The authors’ creative
approach gives readers a feel for the thought processes of the great
minds in economics and underscores key ideas impacting contemporary
thought and practice. Well-crafted discussions are further enriched by
absorbing examples and figures. Thorough suggested reading lists give
options for more in-depth explorations by interested readers.
Arranged chronologically by year of award, all 44 entries cogently explain the laureate's life's work in language even non-economists can follow. Economists interested in the intellectual history of their discipline, and professors and students of business will find Wahid's book a very useful resource when seeking out the basic outlines of the thoughts of the scholars who have shaped the fields of economic inquiry, practice, and research. Also, any student in the social sciences thumbing through this book will instantly recognize many currents of thought that have influenced the way scholars in their discipline approach their craft.
Kurz begins with classical economics in ancient Greece and concludes with the visionary work of Kenneth J. Arrow and Amartya Sen. Among many other topics, he explains what Adam Smith meant by an “invisible hand"; how Karl Marx’s “law of motion” works in capitalist economies; the roots of Austrian economists' emphasis on the problems of information, incomplete knowledge, and uncertainty; and John Maynard Keynes’s principle of effective demand and economic stabilization. A final chapter sums up the major concerns of economists today and their relation to world events.