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Ideas, Persons & Events (Collected Works of James M. Buchanan, The) [Hardcover]

by James M. Buchanan
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

August 1, 2001 0865972494 978-0865972490
This final volume (save for the Index) in Liberty Fund’s The Collected Works of James M. Buchanan acquaints us most intimately with the man himself. Included are essays and short pieces that shed light on Buchanan’s view of the world.

Ranging from personal reflections on the art and science of economics, to restatements of his central themes and reminiscences of his encounters and collaborations with other great thinkers, this volume presents James Buchanan as a multidimensional human being, not just as a great economic and political thinker.

The thirty-three pieces collected in Ideas, Persons, and Events are grouped into these categories:
1.Autobiographical and Personal Reflections
2.Reflections on Fellow Political Economists
3.Political Economy in the Post-Socialist Century
4.Reform without Romance

As Hartmut Kliemt states in his foreword, “The personal and the theoretical are often inseparably intertwined in the essays of this volume. . . . As a case in point, consider James Buchanan’s account of his relationship to Frank Knight. This account not only sheds some interesting light on the personal element in the development of science, it also offers some new perspectives on the concept of the ‘relatively absolute absolutes,’ which has been so central to Buchanan’s thinking in general.”

James M. Buchanan is an eminent economist who won the Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1986 and is considered one of the greatest scholars of liberty in the twentieth century.

The entire series will include:

Volume 1: The Logical Foundations of Constitutional Liberty
Volume 2: Public Principles of Public Debt
Volume 3: The Calculus of Consent
Volume 4: Public Finance in Democratic Process
Volume 5: The Demand and Supply of Public Goods
Volume 6: Cost and Choice
Volume 7: The Limits of Liberty
Volume 8: Democracy in Deficit
Volume 9: The Power to Tax
Volume 10: The Reason of Rules
Volume 11: Politics by Principle, Not Interest
Volume 12: Economic Inquiry and Its Logic
Volume 13: Politics as Public Choice
Volume 14: Debt and Taxes
Volume 15: Externalities and Public Expenditure Theory
Volume 16: Choice, Contract, and Constitutions
Volume 17: Moral Science and Moral Order
Volume 18: Federalism, Liberty, and the Law
Volume 19: Ideas, Persons, and Events
Volume 20: Indexes


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

James M. Buchanan is an eminent economist who won the Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1986 and one of the greatest scholars of liberty in the twentieth century. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Series: Collected Works of James M. Buchanan, The (Book 19)
  • Hardcover: 395 pages
  • Publisher: Liberty Fund (August 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0865972494
  • ISBN-13: 978-0865972490
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,733,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This is the closing volume of the James M. Buchanan Collected Works series (other than vol. 20, which contains indices by name, by subject, and by title to the entire series, as well as a 46-page curriculum vitae of Professor Buchanan). Volume 19 is the shortest one of the nine volumes in the series that contain papers.

There are a total of 33 essays in this volume. Their contents range from autobiographical reflections to personal reminiscences of fellow economists (Frank Knight, Gordon Tullock, Winston Bush, Jack Wiseman, Friedrich von Hayek) to book reviews to thoughts on the collapse of socialism. Professor Buchanan's writings have been noted for their accessibility to "non-experts", and the essays in this volume are no exception. For the most part they are even less abstract, lighter, at times even fun (although by no means fluffy), than most of Buchanan's other academic publications.

With such a variety of papers, not all of them will be equally interesting to all readers, but there are some true gems here, such as "The Epistemological Feasibility of Free Markets" (don't be put off by that title) and "Consumption without Production: The Impossible Idyll of Socialism".

In addition, the papers on the collapse of socialism are still surprisingly fresh and relevant, even though it has been more than 15 years since the Iron Curtain started coming down in 1989. Why is it that many people are reluctant to embrace free market systems, even though both historical experience and intellectual analysis overwhelmingly demonstrate that collective control, whether of the means of production or of the distribution of product, simply does not work? Buchanan's papers highlight three themes:
* Lack of economic education.
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