The Street Porter and the Philosopher: Conversations on Analytical Egalitarianism

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Adam Smith, asserting the common humanity of the street porter and the philosopher, articulated the classical economists' model of social interactions as exchanges among equals. This model had largely fallen out of favor until, recently, a number of scholars in the avant-garde of economic thought rediscovered it and rechristened it "analytical egalitarianism." In this volume, Sandra J. Peart and David M. Levy bring together an impressive array of authors to explore the ramifications of this analytical ideal and to discuss the ways in which an egalitarian theory of individuality can enable economists to reconcile ideas from opposite ends of the political spectrum.

"The analytical egalitarianism project that Peart and Levy have advanced has come to occupy a prominent place in the current agenda of historians of economic thought."
---Ross Emmett, Associate Professor of Economics and Co-Director of the Michigan Center for Innovation and Economic Prosperity, Michigan State University

"These essays and dialogs from the Summer Institute would make Adam Smith, economist and moral philosopher, proud."
---J. Daniel Hammond, Hultquist Family Professor of Economics, Wake Forest University

With essays by:

  • James M. Buchanan, Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences recipient (1985) and Professor Emeritus, George Mason University and Virginia Polytechnic and State University
  • Juan Pablo Couyoumdijian, Universidad del Desearrollo, Chile
  • Tyler Cowen, George Mason University
  • Eric Crampton, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
  • Andrew Farrant, Dickinson College
  • Samuel Hollander, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto
  • M. Ali Khan, Johns Hopkins University
  • Thomas Leonard, Princeton University
  • Deirdre McCloskey, University of Illinois, Chicago
  • Leonidas Montes, Dean of School of Government, Universidad Adolfo IbaƱez, Chile
  • Maria Pia Paganelli, Yeshiva University and New York University
  • Warren J. Samuels, Professor Emeritus, Michigan State University
  • Eric Schliesser, VENI post-doctoral research fellow, Leiden University, and University of Amsterdam
  • Gordon Tullock, George Mason University

Sandra J. Peart is Dean of the Jepson School of Leadership Studies, University of Richmond, Virginia.

David M. Levy is Professor of Economics at George Mason University (GMU) and Research Associate at the Center for Study of Public Choice at GMU.

They are Co-Directors of George Mason University's Summer Institute for the Preservation of the History of Economics.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780472116447
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Press
  • Publication date: 6/19/2008
  • Pages: 448
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Introduction: The Street Porter and the Philosopher Contextualized Sandra J. Peart Peart, Sandra J. David M. Levy Levy, David M. 1

Pt. 1 Politics, Markets, and Equality

2 Politics as Exchange or Politics as Power: Two Views of Government James M. Buchanan Buchanan, James M. Warren J. Samuels Samuels, Warren J. 15

3 The Theory of Economic Policy in British Classical Political Economy: A Sympathetic Reading David M. Levy Levy, David M. Sandra J. Peart Peart, Sandra J. 41

4 Economic Organization, Distribution, and the Equality Issue: The Marx-Engels Perspective Samuel Hollander Hollander, Samuel 64

5 Robust Analytical Egalitarianism: Worst-Case Political Economy and the Socialist Calculation Debate Eric Crampton Crampton, Eric Andrew Farrant Farrant, Andrew 108

Pt. 2 Smithian Themes

6 Sacred Economics Deirdre McCloskey McCloskey, Deirdre 135

7 The Origins of Das Adam Smith Problem and Our Understanding of Sympathy Leonidas Montes Montes, Leonidas 158

8 Adam Smith's Invisible Hand Warren J. Samuels Samuels, Warren J. 179

9 In Medio Stat Virtus: An Alternative View of Usury in Adam Smith's Thinking Maria Pia Paganelli Paganelli, Maria Pia 202

10 The Measure of Real Price: Adam Smith's Science of Equity Eric Schliesser Schliesser, Eric 228

Pt. 3 The Role of the Expert

11 Attitudes toward Race, Hierarchy, and Transformation in the Nineteenth Century: The Role of the Expert Sandra J. Peart Peart, Sandra J. David M. Levy Levy, David M. 239

12 Frank Knight, Worst-Case Theorizing, and Economic Planning: Socialism as Monopoly Politics Andrew Farrant Farrant, Andrew 261

13 On Hayek's Road to Serfdom: Sixty Years Later M. Ali KhanKhan, M. Ali 269

14 Hiring a Foreign Expert: Chile in the Nineteenth Century Juan Pablo Couyoumdjian Couyoumdjian, Juan Pablo 289

Pt. 4 Literature, Biology, and Economics

15 Is a Novel a Model? Tyler Cowen Cowen, Tyler 319

16 Denying Human Homogeneity: Eugenics and the Making of Postclassical Economics Sandra J. Peart Peart, Sandra J. David M. Levy Levy, David M. 338

17 More Merciful and Not Less Effective: Eugenics and American Economics in the Progressive Era Thomas C. Leonard Leonard, Thomas C. 358

18 Evolution and Human Behavior Gordon Tullock Tullock, Gordon 383

Pt. 5 The Buchanan-Rawls Correspondence

19 Introduction and Correspondence David M. Levy Levy, David M. Sandra J. Peart Peart, Sandra J. 397

The Texts 405

Contributors 417

Index 421

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