The Passions and the Interests: Political Arguments for Capitalism before Its Triumph

Princeton University Press
Free sample

In this volume, Albert Hirschman reconstructs the intellectual climate of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to illuminate the intricate ideological transformation that occurred, wherein the pursuit of material interests--so long condemned as the deadly sin of avarice--was assigned the role of containing the unruly and destructive passions of man. Hirschman here offers a new interpretation for the rise of capitalism, one that emphasizes the continuities between old and new, in contrast to the assumption of a sharp break that is a common feature of both Marxian and Weberian thinking. Among the insights presented here is the ironical finding that capitalism was originally supposed to accomplish exactly what was soon denounced as its worst feature: the repression of the passions in favor of the "harmless," if one-dimensional, interests of commercial life. To portray this lengthy ideological change as an endogenous process, Hirschman draws on the writings of a large number of thinkers, including Montesquieu, Sir James Steuart, and Adam Smith.

Featuring a new afterword by Jeremy Adelman and a foreword by Amartya Sen, this Princeton Classics edition of The Passions and the Interests sheds light on the intricate ideological transformation from which capitalism emerged triumphant, and reaffirms Hirschman's stature as one of our most influential and provocative thinkers.

Some images inside the book are unavailable due to digital copyright restrictions.

Read more

About the author

Albert O. Hirschman (1915-2012) was one of the leading intellectuals of the twentieth century, renowned for his contributions to economics, the social sciences, and the history of ideas. He is the author of many books, including the influential Exit, Voice, and Loyalty and The Strategy of Economic Development.
Read more
1 total

Additional Information

Princeton University Press
Read more
Published on
Oct 6, 2013
Read more
Read more
Read more
Read more
Business & Economics / Economic History
History / General
History / Modern / 17th Century
History / Modern / 18th Century
Political Science / History & Theory
Social Science / Developing & Emerging Countries
Read more
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
Read more
Eligible for Family Library

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
Is Wall Street bad for Main Street America?

In looking at the forces that brought our current administration to power one thing is clear: much of the population believes that our economic system is rigged to enrich the privileged elites at the expense of hard-working Americans. This is a belief held equally on both sides of political spectrum, and it seems only to be gaining momentum.
A key reason, says Financial Times columnist Rana Foroohar, is the fact that Wall Street is no longer supporting Main Street businesses that create the jobs for the middle and working class. She draws on in-depth reporting and interviews at the highest rungs of business and government to show how the “financialization of America”—the phenomenon by which finance and its way of thinking have come to dominate every corner of business—is threatening the American Dream.
Now updated with new material explaining how our corrupted financial sys­tem propelled Donald Trump to power, Makers and Takers explores the confluence of forces that has led American businesses to favor balance-sheet engineering over the actual kind, greed over growth, and short-term profits over putting people to work. From the cozy relationship between Wall Street and Washington, to a tax code designed to benefit wealthy individuals and corporations, to forty years of bad policy decisions, she shows why so many Americans have lost trust in the sys­tem, and why it matters urgently to us all.
Through colorful stories of both “Takers,” those stifling job creation while lining their own pockets, and “Makers,” businesses serving the real economy, Foroohar shows how we can reverse these trends for a better path forward.
In this bold history and manifesto, a former White House director of economic policy exposes the economic, political, and cultural cracks that wealthy nations face and makes the case for transforming those same vulnerabilities into sources of strength—and the foundation of a national renewal.

America and other developed countries, including Germany, Japan, France, and Great Britain are in desperate straits. The loss of community, a contracting jobs market, immigration fears, rising globalization, and poisonous partisanship—the adverse price of unprecedented prosperity—are pushing these nations to the brink.

Acclaimed author, economist, hedge fund manager, and presidential advisor Todd G. Buchholz argues that without a sense of common purpose and shared identity, nations can collapse. The signs are everywhere: Reckless financial markets encourage people to gamble with other people’s money. A coddling educational culture removes the stigma of underachievement. Community traditions such as American Legion cookouts and patriotic parades are derided as corny or jingoistic. Newcomers are watched with suspicion and contempt.

As Buchholz makes clear, the United States is not the first country to suffer these fissures. In The Price of Prosperity he examines the fates of previous empires—those that have fallen as well as those extricated from near-collapse and the ruins of war thanks to the vision and efforts of strong leaders. He then identifies what great leaders do to fend off the forces that tear nations apart.

Is the loss of empire inevitable? No. Can a community spirit be restored in the U.S. and in Europe? The answer is a resounding yes. We cannot retrieve the jobs of our grandparents, but we can embrace uniquely American traditions, while building new foundations for growth and change. Buchholz offers a roadmap to recovery, and calls for a revival of national pride and patriotism to help us come together once again to protect the nation and ensure our future.


20 世紀重量級思想巨擘赫緒曼 《反動的修辭》作者跨界代表作



本書是知名社會科學家與思想家赫緒曼最重要的代表作品。在赫緒曼的學術生涯中,本書也標示他從發展經濟學走向一個更為寬廣的經濟社會思想研究。自 1970 年出版以來,其不僅是社會科學的當代經典,啟發許多學科,書名更早已成為社會科學界的專用術語。和赫緒曼大多數的著作一樣,本書簡明易懂、輕薄短小,卻承載了極重的想像力和洞察力——其著作的一貫特點,就是永遠以令人意想不到的新角度和新視野,來回答重要的問題。




廖 美│美國紐約市立大學研究中心經濟學博士






耿 曙│浙江大學社會學系「校百人計畫」研究員





——《經濟學人》(The Economist),刊於赫緒曼逝世後


——《紐約客》(The New Yorker)

條理分明的 126 頁論述……大師之作。

——《華爾街日報》(The Wall Street Journal)


——《紐約書評》雜誌(The New York Review of Books)


——《外交事務》(Foreign Affairs)




——《經濟學雜誌》(The Economic Journal)






















——史丹利.霍夫曼(Stanley Hoffmann),國際關係著名學者,哈佛大學歐洲研究中心創辦人


——約瑟夫.克拉夫特(Joseph Kraft),美國著名記者


——阿馬蒂亞.沈恩(Amartya Sen),1998年諾貝爾經濟學獎得主


——肯尼斯.阿羅(Kenneth J. Arrow),新古典經濟學大師,1972年諾貝爾經濟學獎得主


——約翰.高伯瑞(John Kenneth Galbraith),自由派經濟學家,曾任羅斯福、杜魯門、甘迺迪等總統的經濟顧問


——丹尼斯.穆勒(Dennis C. Mueller),維也納大學榮譽教授

出版社 商周出版 (城邦)

Tranquillité des années cinquante, turbulence des années soixante, retour à la passivité dans les années soixante-dix : ce mouvement cyclique a frappé tous les observateurs, mais n’a guère reçu jusqu’ici d’explication. Albert O. Hirschman en propose une, des plus séduisantes, qui, au-delà de cet exemple récent, s’applique à toutes les manifestations d’une structure essentielle à nos sociétés développées, au moins depuis la révolution industrielle.
C’est en effet une alternance récurrente que l’on constate, entre l’engagement des individus comme des groupes dans l’action publique et le repli sur les paisibles valeurs du bonheur privé. Chaque moment du cycle entraîne une satisfaction relative, mais aussi une déception spécifique qui pousse les acteurs vers le moment suivant.
Cette brillante utilisation de la catégorie centrale de déception trouve encore bien d’autres illustrations ; on découvrira ainsi dans cet ouvrage une critique de la théorie classique de la consommation, une brillante analyse du suffrage universel, entre bien d’autres aperçus féconds et originaux.

Albert O. Hirschman est professeur émérite en sciences sociales à l’Institute for advanced study de Princeton. Auteur de nombreux ouvrages, il a notamment publié en France Les Passions et les intérêts ; Deux siècles de rhétorique réactionnaire ; Un certain penchant à l’autosubversion et Défection et prise de parole.

Traduit de l’anglais (Etats-Unis)
par Martine Leyris et Jean-Baptiste Grasset.

Collection « L’espace du politique »
dirigée par Pierre Birnbaum.
©2018 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.