Albert Hirschman is an important social theorist, generally classified as evident in Hirschman’s book, The Passions and the Interests (). The Passions and the Interests: Political Arguments for Capitalism Before its. Triumph. Albert O. Hirschman. Princeton: Princeton University Press, , pp. x, . ALBERT O. HIRSCHMAN, The Passions and the Interests: Political Arguments for Capitalism Before its Triumph. Pp. vii, Princeton, N.J.: Princeton.
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The Passions and the Interests: Political Arguments for Capitalism Before Its Triumph
This book traces the history of ideas that turned a “passion” a danger to the body politic into an “interest” a beneficial principle of social organization. A wonderful analysis with insights derived from rhe study of Machiavelli, Hume, Bacon, Spinoza, Smith, Montesquieu, and others from the Scottish Enlightenment and the French physiocrats.
This book is a brisk perusal of intellectual history from Machiavelli to late 18th century. Capitalism was promoted by thinkers including Montesquieu, Sir James Steuart, and Adam Smith as repressing the passions for “harmless” commercial activities.
Dec 31, Sunil rated it really liked it. Not very accessible for the layman. Of course, this idealistic view has since proven flawed.
Don’t have a Kindle? The most interesting part is probably when he discusses how alienation and a loss of autonomy was the crucial argument of the philosophers when emphasising the need for a vastly expanded commercial sector – they desired what has become a key capitalist critique later on.
An interesting, yet challenging, read He was not necessarily trying to convince me, his reader, of any one thing, but rather to open my eyes thf the train of past arguments and to make me interestz that it is important to educate myself in past rhetoric before attempting my own modern rhetoric.
Not for everybody, for sure, and there’s a large “so what? Dec 31, Franz rated it it was amazing. Dec 03, Muhtadi Faiaz rated it really liked it.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Hirschman left interpreting for the accused German Anton Dostler in Italy No trivia or quizzes yet. AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally.
Hirschman was one of the leading intellectuals of the twentieth century, renowned for his contributions to economics, the social sciences, and the history of ideas. Oh, and skip the Sen foreword, that was a complete waste of time.
Understanding Society: Hirschman on the passions
This is probably all one can ask of history, and of history of ideas in particular: I was having trouble really caring about what Enlightenment thinkers many of them a bit obscure said about capitalism, but then this book got a lot more interesting in the second half of the last chapter, where Hirschman both gives the discussion a bit more historical context and also explains why it is useful to think about from a contemporary perspective.
Capitalist activities came into favor among the intellectual elite “not because the money-making activities were approved in themselves, but because they were thought to have pwssions most beneficial side hirxchman The International Who’s Who Views Read Edit View history. Money making was a frowned upon activity, with avarice being sinful.
We seem to live in more fatalistic times when our options are to ignore the passions or to surrender to them as robots. Feb 06, Brian rated it liked it Shelves: In other projects Wikimedia Commons Wikiquote. It was difficult at some points to make sense of the language the author uses, but overall was a fascinating read and gave me a lot to think about.
Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Responses to Decline in Firms, Organizations, and States.
The History of a Dangerous Idea.
Albert O. Hirschman: The Passions and the Interests
In this framework, capitalism was justified by showing how capitalism, harnessing the power of self-interest and greed, can dominate other harmful passions and lead human society tbe progress. Amazon Second Chance Pass it on, trade it in, give it a second life.
Retrieved July 23, It is rare to pick up a book for academic research and find it a pleasure to read, interestw this was certainly the case with Hirschman’s delightful prose.