Monday, February 15, 2010

Sex, Lies, and Economics: The Amazing Story of Economics and Economists Before Adam Smith

I am getting ready to send out my proposal for my new book. If anyone has any comments on this, I would be most appreciative.


TheTrucker said...

My only comment is _DO_IT_!!! said...

Hmmm, a more worldly version of The Worldly Philosophers, eh?

John Law was to some extent a victim of his own operations, a true believer in the Mississippi bubble that he oversaw and losing badly when it finally fully crashed. It was an example of one of those bubbles that had a "period of distress," peaking in December, 1719 and then drifting until it crashed in April 1720, with John Law having founded New Orleans out of an effort to make it go. He mourned the exit of the "true Mississippians" in December 1719, whose exit brought the peak.

One of those who exited, making a lot of money, and then getting in on the ground floor of the newly starting South Sea bubble in UK, which was a total scam from top to bottom, and which also exhibited a "period of financial distress" between its peak in April 1720 (at the time of the crash of the Mississippi bubble in France) and its crash in September 1720, was Richard Cantillon, who made money on both bubbles before retiring to Guiana.

Oh, and I think that poor woman "saved" by Petty was "hanged," not "hung."

Good luck, :-).

homoacademicus said...

I can see the interesting lives, but the "relevance" of these thinkers today is not explained in the proposal. You are trying to sell it as an engaging narrative, so the development of the story, what connects these different, interesting biographies, should be there.
Good luck

Michael Perelman said...

Barkeley, Cantillon never went to the colony. His brother went, but Cantillon did get a large land grant there.

AndrewBW said...

Edits in brackets.

discover tell-tale of signs [insert of] criminality. Perhaps, [delete comma] she

famous overnight as a [change a to the] person responsible

an [delete an] adviser to the King

murder, as well as [change as well as to and] many lesser crimes

the illegitmate [correct spelling of illegitimate] grandson of William Shakespeare

of a short period of [change of to in] the life of Charles II

surprised about [change about to by] my command

grappling [insert with] the same economic problems

By exploring [insert the] extraordinary lives

Also quite a few excess commas, which I won't bore you with.

Sounds like fun.

Eleanor said...

I want to read it. What a collection of crooks.

Eleanor said...

Not Newton, as far as I know, though he was an odd duck.

A.J. Sutter said...

Why focus exclusively on Anglo-Saxon economists? You should look at "Civil Economy: Efficiency, Equity, Public Happiness" by Luigino Bruni & Stefano Zamagni (Bern: Peter Bern Lang 2007; translation from "Economia Civile" (Bologna: Il Mulino 2006)). The first 4 chapters of this book discuss lines of economic thought going back to Bernardino da Siena in the 15th Century, and especially Antonio Genovesi (1713-1769) and the 18th Century Neapolitan School. These thinkers' vision of economics was quite different from Smith's.