- 1 Post By Kripa27
Adam Smith - summary of key ideas
Dear teachers. Could you read this short piece, point out any mistakes and tell if its written properly for academic purposes? I'll be very grateful for any help.
Adam Smith was one of the key thinkers of the Scottish Enlightenment. He is best known for economic theories laid out in the seminal treatise The Wealth of Nations.
He was a founder of a pioneering doctrine called ‘economic liberalism’, which challenged mercantilism and feudalism. According to him, pursuing egoistic self-interest could be a motive power for progress and development. In his vision of the economy, a nation’s wealth could only be created when a free market existed. Therefore, he claimed, economic freedom is an essential condition that leads to a nation’s well-being. Adam Smith coined the concept of the ‘invisible hand of the market’, and argued that a self-regulating market is most beneficial for the well-being of people, and therefore state interference in the economy should be kept at a minimum level, otherwise it would lead to expansion of bureaucracy and consequently a totalitarian state. Nonetheless, he still endorsed state intervention in the economy in certain circumstances, for instance, to restrain monopolies or to organise public works such as building “roads, bridges, canals, and harbours” ( Oxford Reference).
Smith was a “polymath, and an eminent social theorist and moral philosopher”(Oxford Reference). He lectured in Scottish universities, traveled around Europe meeting other enlighteners like Voltaire and worked as a commissioner of customs in Edinburgh. As a result of his work, economy emerged as a distinct field of science. There is no doubt he was a an ingenious and brilliant personality, a typical Enlightenment figure.
Adam Smith is considered to be ‘the first economist’ and the father of capitalism and economic liberalism. His legacy continues to inspire and his theories are the subject of frequent discussions, although there are those who call the validity of his assumptions into question.
Smith, when working on his concepts, was led both by rational thinking and observation of the processes occurring in societies. His theories on economy reflected the Enlightenment ideal of liberty (free-market, free trade, free competition). It could be said that he was an idealist and altruist deeply concerned with the welfare of humankind.
Last edited by leszkoss; 09-Oct-2013 at 10:18.
Re: Adam Smith - summary of key ideas
I was able to find one mistake and prune some words. Have a look at the corrected version:
"Therefore, he claimed, economic freedom was an essential condition that lead to nation’s well-being. Adam Smith coined the concept of the ‘invisible hand of the market’, and argued that the market could regulate itself for the benefit and well-being of people"
Therefore, he claimed, economic freedom was an essential condition that led to a nation’s well-being. Adam Smith coined the concept of the ‘invisible hand of the market’, and argued that the market could regulate itself for the well-being of people.
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