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Principles of Political Economy: And Chapters on Socialism

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This volume unites, for the first time, Books IV and V of Mill's great treatise on political economy with his fragmentary Chapters on Socialism. It shows him applying his classical economic theory to policy questions of lasting concern: the desirability of sustained growth of national wealth and population, the merits of capitalism versus socialism, and the suitable scope This volume unites, for the first time, Books IV and V of Mill's great treatise on political economy with his fragmentary Chapters on Socialism. It shows him applying his classical economic theory to policy questions of lasting concern: the desirability of sustained growth of national wealth and population, the merits of capitalism versus socialism, and the suitable scope of government intervention in the competitive market economy. His answers to those questions have profound relevance today, and they serve to illustrate the enduring power and imagination of his distinctive liberal utilitarian philosophy. The lucid introduction and explanatory notes clarify Mill's philosophy in relation to his economic theory, and make full use of the most recent scholarship.


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This volume unites, for the first time, Books IV and V of Mill's great treatise on political economy with his fragmentary Chapters on Socialism. It shows him applying his classical economic theory to policy questions of lasting concern: the desirability of sustained growth of national wealth and population, the merits of capitalism versus socialism, and the suitable scope This volume unites, for the first time, Books IV and V of Mill's great treatise on political economy with his fragmentary Chapters on Socialism. It shows him applying his classical economic theory to policy questions of lasting concern: the desirability of sustained growth of national wealth and population, the merits of capitalism versus socialism, and the suitable scope of government intervention in the competitive market economy. His answers to those questions have profound relevance today, and they serve to illustrate the enduring power and imagination of his distinctive liberal utilitarian philosophy. The lucid introduction and explanatory notes clarify Mill's philosophy in relation to his economic theory, and make full use of the most recent scholarship.

30 review for Principles of Political Economy: And Chapters on Socialism

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Good heavens what a slog. But, it's done now. Important intellectual history, and all that jazz. Four stars because it's more readable than most of its ilk. This particular edition is the 1865, if that concerns you.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Cherif Jazra

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Very clear exposition on the 3 agents, labor, landlord and capital which interact towards production and distribution of material wealth. Mill does seem to be developing what has already been known by previous economists such as Smith, Fourier, Owen. Bertrand Russell in an essay on him finds that his theory was in line with predecessors such as with Ricardo's theory of value, itself superseded by Jevon's introduction of the concept of marginal utility. Nevertheless, Mill style is so engrossing Very clear exposition on the 3 agents, labor, landlord and capital which interact towards production and distribution of material wealth. Mill does seem to be developing what has already been known by previous economists such as Smith, Fourier, Owen. Bertrand Russell in an essay on him finds that his theory was in line with predecessors such as with Ricardo's theory of value, itself superseded by Jevon's introduction of the concept of marginal utility. Nevertheless, Mill style is so engrossing and to the point and most of the time following logically from his argument that one can only be in awe of the wide erudition on display. This book was released in 1848, the same year of the communist manifesto, yet Mill seems to be unaware of the ideas of Marx, and is only concerned with socialism and communism as envisioned by french utopian from the saint Simeon school and Owen/Fourier. A great read so far, with many ideas to ponder about in our age of big corporations!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jamie Barringer (Ravenmount)

    This book is actually a better textbook for political economy than some of the more modern ones I've read or used, though obviously it is a bit outdated in some areas.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    This was an audiobook from LibriVox. https://librivox.org/principles-of-po...

  5. 5 out of 5

    Shaun

    Has some insightful thoughts, but overall it is verbose, and not all of it is timeless. It's more one of those books where you want to highlight 5-10 parts than to memorize every word.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    Mills' fantastically thorough analysis of economics is remarkable both for its breadth as well as it's continued relevancy. Some of it has lost any bearing in the modern world (whole chapters devoted to cottier farming!) and some of it remains politically controversial (progressive taxation). JSM's attempts to humanize that which Adam Smith made unnecessarily cruel are illuminating. His dialogue with socialism as the editions evolved are also fascinating. Still, the length of the book and Mills' Mills' fantastically thorough analysis of economics is remarkable both for its breadth as well as it's continued relevancy. Some of it has lost any bearing in the modern world (whole chapters devoted to cottier farming!) and some of it remains politically controversial (progressive taxation). JSM's attempts to humanize that which Adam Smith made unnecessarily cruel are illuminating. His dialogue with socialism as the editions evolved are also fascinating. Still, the length of the book and Mills' attention to minutia make this a less than stellar read. The abridged version is probably less of a slog.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jake

    Sometimes its easier to read economic philosophy from the 18th and 19th centuries because of the way it begins simply and then builds upon itself until a complex, but understandable, framework lays before you. JSM does just that and in a far better way than any of his contemporaries or predecessors (Smith). Much of this is due to his writing style which is full of imagery and easy to understand examples.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Abdulaziz Fagih

    جون أستورت مل غني عن التعريف ولذلك سأنتقل الى تقييم الكتاب مباشرة هذا هو أفضل الكتب التي مرت علي في الأقتصاد الرأسمالي الكلاسيكي والكتاب أصدر في القرن التاسع عشر فهو يتحدث بكثافة على عوامل وعناصر الأقتصاد الأساسية بقية التقيم على الرابط http://mt-awf.blogspot.com/2011/09/bl...

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jeremy Egerer

    Couldn't finish all of Principles, because I already read Ludwig von Mises' "Human Action," which was light years ahead of it. I might come back to it again; essentially of some historical value, for looking at the capitalist world before we had decades of failed socialism, but extremely dated as far as economics are concerned. Read Mises' Human Action instead.

  10. 4 out of 5

    P.

    Essential, although I think I like reading Bastiat more (both in French and in translation).

  11. 4 out of 5

    Moll132

    Mill is the original BA ECON 314: John Stuart Mill: Political Economy and Social Philosophy

  12. 4 out of 5

    Vivek

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jamie Barringer

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ellen Schwartz

  15. 4 out of 5

    Priscilla

  16. 4 out of 5

    Liang Zuo

  17. 4 out of 5

    Bùi Hải

  18. 4 out of 5

    Stanislav

  19. 4 out of 5

    Matthew S Greaves

  20. 4 out of 5

    Chris

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mikko Arevuo

  22. 5 out of 5

    Roger Cuddy

  23. 4 out of 5

    Darren

  24. 5 out of 5

    Nicole Rodgers

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alex Foti

  26. 5 out of 5

    Erlend

  27. 5 out of 5

    O

  28. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca McCaffrey

  29. 5 out of 5

    Pyang

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heather

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