Natural Law and the Origin of Political Economy: Samuel Pufendorf and the History of Economics, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Natural Law and the Origin of Political Economy

Samuel Pufendorf and the History of Economics, 1st Edition

By Arild Saether

Routledge

296 pages | 1 B/W Illus.

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Description

Samuel Pufendorf’s work on natural law and political economy was extensive and has been cited by several important figures in the history of economic thought. Yet his name is rarely mentioned in textbooks on the history of economic thought, the history of political science or the history of philosophy. In this unprecedented study, Arild Sæther sheds new light both on Pufendorf’s own life and work, as well as his influence on his contemporaries and on later scholars.

This book explores Pufendorf ’s doctrines of political economy and his work on natural law, which was translated into several major European languages. Natural Law and the Origin of Political Economy considers the influence he had on the writings on political economy of John Locke, Charles Montesquieu, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Francis Hutcheson and Adam Smith, amongst others. If Smith can be called the father of modern economics, this book claims that Pufendorf can be called the grandfather.

This volume is of great importance to those who study Pufendorf ’s extensive works, as well as those interested in history of economic thought, political economy and political philosophy.

Reviews

"Sæther gives an impressive proof of erudition and wide reading, and this in an epoch when erudition has become almost a pejorative word in some circles … He was … independent and could write about fundamental questions in the history of thought which fewer and fewer economists even know existed. It is a light in the darkness that the result has been published as a doctoral thesis and a book at a respected publishing house."

Bo Sandelin, Ekonomisk Debatt

Table of Contents

Introduction

Part I: Childhood and Education

  1. Childhood: Turbulent Times

  2. University Education in Leipzig and Jena
  3. A Creative Imprisonment in Copenhagen
  4. Part II: A True European

  5. Academic Career
  6. A Champion of the Enlightenment
  7. Part III: Doctrines of Political Economy

  8. Method of Analysis
  9. Theory of Human Behaviour
  10. Private Property and the Four-Stages Theory
  11. Theories of Value, Money and Trade
  12. The Foundation of States and Council Decisions
  13. Division of State Powers and Principles of Taxation
  14. Part IV: Diffusion of Pufendorf’s Economic Ideas

  15. A Great Popularizer
  16. John Locke an Admirer of Pufendorf
  17. Part V: Early French Philosophers and Pufendorf

  18. The First French Followers
  19. Charles Montesquieu: A Great Philosopher
  20. Jean-Jacques Rousseau: A Political Thinker
  21. The First Economic Model Builders
  22. Part VI: Scottish Followers of Pufendorf

  23. Gershom Carmichael brought Pufendorf to Scotland
  24. Francis Hutcheson a User of Pufendorf
  25. Pufendorf as a Predecessor of Adam Smith
  26. Part VII: How could Pufendorf be Overlooked?

  27. The Bedevilled Historians
  28. Have Economists Overlooked Pufendorf?
  29. Pufendorf the Grandfather of Political Economy

About the Author

Arild Sæther is Professor Emeritus. He retired from University of Agder, Kristiansand Norway in 2011 and is now affiliated with Agder Academy of Sciences and Letters. Recently he received his Doctor of Philosophy (Dr. Philos) from the Norwegian School of Economics, Bergen. Previously he worked for two and a half years as a Professor of European Economic Integration in Maastricht, the Netherlands, and three years as Director of EuroFaculty Tartu-Riga-Vilnius. Sæther has published books on economic theory and a number of journal articles. For over twenty years his main area of research has been the history of economic thought.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in the History of Economics

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUS000000
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / General
BUS069000
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General
BUS069030
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / Theory