Study Guide Four

ECON 4950
Senior Seminar
Study Guide Four
January 13, 2014
Introduction of the Worldly Philosophers
Who authored the following:
“the ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful
than is commonly understood. Indeed, the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite
exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually slaves of some defunct economist. Madmen in authority, who hear
voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back. I am sure that the power o
vested interest is vastly exaggerated comparedwith the gradual encroachment of ideas.
Some of the subjects of the book (but not all).
 a philosopher — Adam Smith
 a parson — Thomas R. Malthus
 a stockbroker — David Ricardo
 a nobleman — Saint-Simon
 a madman — Charles Fourier
 a revolutionary — Karl Marx
 an aesthete — John Maynard Keynes
 a tramp — Henry George
 a skeptic — Thorstein Veblen
Chapter Two: The Economic Revolution
Heilbroner notes that human beings face a struggle between self-centeredness and cooperation. How this
struggle resolved in primitive societies?
What three mechanisms do socieities employ to prevent society from falling apart? For which two
mechanisms is the study of economics not really necessary? Why?
What lesson do we learn from
a. France in 1305
b. Germany in 1550
c. 16th century England (later in the chapter, with respect to mass production in the weaving trade)
d. Boston in 1639 (note the message from the sermon)
e. France in 1666
Historically when wages rise, what happens to a person’s willingness to work? Why?
Define the term “market system”.
List and explain the forces that led to the adoption of the market system in Europe?
Who was
a. Thomas Hobbes
b. Thomas Mun (
c. Bernard Mandeville
Define the system of Mercantilism.
HINT: For #7 and #8 you might want to do some on-line research.
A good source of information on the people in the Worldly Philosophers: (hint: does not have information on Hobbes, Mun, or