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Thorstein Veblen And The Revival Of Free Market Capitalism

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Thorstein Veblen And The Revival Of Free Market Capitalism

Janet T. Knoedler , Robert E. Prasch , Dell P. Champlin

Edited by Janet T. Knoedler, Associate Professor of Economics and Chair, Department of Economics, Bucknell University, the late Robert E. Prasch, formerly Associate Professor of Economics, Middlebury College and Dell P. Champlin, Lecturer in Economics, Western Washington University, US

2007 264 pp Hardback 978 1 84542 540 1
ebook isbn 978 1 84720 707 4

Hardback £82.00 on-line price £73.80


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Thorstein Veblen was a leading observer and analyst of capitalism. Featuring original essays by renowned Veblen scholars, this volume revisits his legacy. The contributors note that, with the restoration of laissez faire as the governing principle of contemporary economic ideology and policy-making, his insights are once again timely. They reexamine and expand upon the subjects that Veblen studied, including: private property, markets, culture, corporations, democracy, institutions and the theory of capital.

Contributors: G. Atkinson, D.P. Champlin, E.R. Hake, D. Hamilton, G.M. Hodgson, J.T. Knoedler, A. Mayhew, S. Plotkin, R.E. Prasch, W.T. Waller

Further information

With the restoration of laissez faire as the governing principle of contemporary economic ideology and policy making, Thorstein Veblen’s insights are once again timely. This book revisits his legacy, featuring original essays by renowned Veblen scholars.

The contributors review and comment upon the subjects that concerned Veblen such as: the legal system, finance and capital, the operation of markets, neoclassical economics, private property, cultural and economic change, the place of science, and higher education. They consider how his evolutionary theory of the economy and society can continue to inform our understanding of our modern world. As an astute and highly capable observer, Veblen shed light on our present system through a re-examination of a similar system.

Students and scholars of economics will find this provocative book of great interest. It will also be a refreshing discussion for those frustrated by the gap between the rosy scenarios of conventional economics and the problems of inequality, conspicuous consumption, concentrated economic power and unresponsive government.

Full table of contents



1. The Place of Science in Society: Progress, Pragmatism, Pluralism
Anne Mayhew

2. Thorstein Veblen on the Origins and Meaning of Private Property
Robert E. Prasch

3. Capital and the Modern Corporation
Eric Hake

4. Pecuniary Institutions: Their Role and Effects
Glen Atkinson

5. Veblen’s Missing Theory of Markets and Exchange, or can you have an Economic Theory Without a Theory of Market Exchange?
William T. Waller

6. Some Myths of Veblenian Institutionalism
Geoffrey M. Hodgson

7. Veblen: Economics Raised to the Cultural Level
David Hamilton

8. Veblen on Higher Education
Anne Mayhew

9. Thorstein Veblen and the Sabotage of Democracy
Sidney Plotkin

10. Getting to the Good Life: Agents of Change
Janet T. Knoedler


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