'Mere Inventions of the Imagination': A Survey of Recent Literature on Adam Smith

Economics and Philosophy 13 (2):281-312 (1997)
As late twentieth-century discourses of modernity and postmodernity invoke their Enlightenment heritage in a search for the origins of their present achievements and predicaments, Adam Smith's works are still seen as a canonic representative of that heritage. Smith has long been evoked as the ‘father’ of economics and the original proponent of laissez-faire capitalism, but the political changes in recent decades have reconstituted his iconic status. With the full range of Smith's published and unpublished writings and lectures now widely available, there has been a huge growth in the scholarly literature on Smith which has subjected this traditional view to searching questions. The overwhelming conclusion to emerge is that Smith's works display a subtlety and complexity that is at odds with the received image of Smith as the spokesman of modernity, but the diversity of interpretation raises some difficult methodological issues
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DOI 10.1017/S0266267100004521
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George Bragues (2009). Adam Smith's Vision of the Ethical Manager. Journal of Business Ethics 90 (4):447 - 460.

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