The Big Three in Economics

  • by Mark Skousen
  • Narrated by Jeff Riggenbach
  • 9 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The Big Three in Economics reveals the battle of ideas among the three most influential economists in world history: Adam Smith, representing laissez faire; Karl Marx, reflecting the radical socialist model; and John Maynard Keynes, symbolizing big government and the welfare state. History comes alive in this fascinating story of opposing views that continue to play a fundamental role in today's politics and economics. In the 21st century, Adam Smith's "invisible hand" model has gained the upper hand, and capitalism has ultimately won the ideological battle over socialism and interventionism. But even in the era of globalization and privatization, Keynesian and Marxist ideas continue to play a significant role in economic policy in the public and private sectors.

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What the Critics Say

"Thoughtful, highly readable account that brings economics to life." (R. Glenn Hubbard, Dean, Columbia Business School)
"I love Mark Skousen's book about the history of economists - it is so interesting and well written, and helps us visualize the big picture." (Jeremy J. Siegel, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania)
"A curious, enlightening and creative account of the world's three most influential economists, and why their theories have had such a huge impact on the economic history of the modern world." (Robert J. Shiller, Yale University)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Acceptable but rather partisan coverage

This title includes short biographies of each of the three economists Smith, Marx and Keynes, together with a discussion of the main points of their work and critique of their ideas. It also goes into useful detail about their successors and their historical impact.

Serves as a reasonable introduction to the history of economics for the general reader. There is bias introduced by the author's particular perspective. For example, he devotes a surprising amount of space to a discussion of whether or not Adam Smith was a practicing Christian. The description of Karl Marx is splendidly bitchy: a man described more than once as 'demonic'. He is villified, for example, because his children died in poverty. However, much of the discussion of Marx' work is reasonably unbiased and can be useful. It is obviously a matter of great dismay to the author that John Maynard Keynes described himself as an 'immoralist' and was openly homosexual for part of his life.

A reasonably good read, less impartial than I would have liked, but presents the main economic ideas in an accessible manner.
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- David

Poorly written - like student notes

Not impressed with this title at all - overly simplistic, historically inaccurate and written in small chunks - pretty much like a students' set of notes from lectures. Not for anyone interested in Economics or the economists in question. I would highly recommend Thomas Sowell's basic economics as it covers the essential points in a far more intelligent & lucid way
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- Amazon Customer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-04-2007
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.