Two centuries ago, Adam Smith explained the modern free-market economy. More than that, he discusses the need for, advantages of, and limitations of a free markets. The introduction in this printing is especially good. Almost a book in itself, it extend for 50 pages and connects the book to other philosophers and economists. Almost, you don't need to read the book after you've read the introduction -- but do it anyway, just to be amazed at Smith's prescience.
"Wealth of Nations," un des rares traité d'économie qui ne soit pas ennuyeux. Beaucoup d'économistes classique et néo-classique se réclament de la pensée d'Adam Smith, il est donc indispensable de connaître l'oeuvre dans sa langue originale. De plus, Karl Marx a emprunté beaucoup de concepts à cet auteur, sans toujours mentionner sa source. J'ai dit.
Two hundred years ago capitalism was really beginning to take over as the dominant economic system. Capitalism was at the time a system allowing an economic and scientific growth, much faster than under the feudal systems, and played a progressive role. However capitalism led to a new kind of oppression of the working class. Adam Smith gave the bourgoise a theory stating that their oppression of the working class was for the common good of all mankind, thus serving as an apology for oppression. This book is a lousy apology. Capitalism is an old-fashioned economic system, ready to become buried on the scrapyard of history. Workers of all countries, Unite!