From his favorite spot on a hill overlooking a bay in Scotland in 1730, the boy Adam smith watched ships arrive from foreign countries to trade cloth and scrap iron for salt and nails. But some of the trade he observed was illegal. The Government permitted foreign countries to buy Scottish products, but did not allow Scots to reciprocate and buy many exported products. As a student and later a professor of moral philosophy at the University of Glasgow, Smith decided that such laws prohibiting free trade between people were wrong.
At a time when kings and queens believed that allowing free trade between people caused chaos, and people needed government to protect them, wrote on the importance of individual freedom and trade for promoting social harmony. Based on his influential writings about the importance of free trade in making people and nations wealthier, the humble Scotsman is recognized as the founding father of economics.
Table of Contents
1 The Young Smith 6
2 College Years 22
3 To Oxford and the Ministry 39
4 Scholarly Beginnings 51
5 The Theory of Moral Sentiments 62
6 Travels Abroad 75
7 From Kirkcaldy to London 90
8 The Wealth of Nations 107
9 An Advocate for Free Trade 122
10 The Author of the Wealth of Nations Lies Here 134
Time Line 142
Source Notes 143