Adam Smith’s Unfinished Project

Robert Garnett, for posterComing April 22nd: a lecture at St. Lawrence University by Senior Fellow Rob Garnett on “Commerce and Beneficence: Adam Smith’s Unfinished Project”

Each individual in modern society “stands at all times in need of the cooperation and assistance of great multitudes,” Adam Smith observes. On standard interpretations of Smith’s Wealth of Nations, the principal engine of voluntary assistance and cooperation beyond the family is market competition, i.e., commerce. An examination of all of Smith’s work (including The Theory of Moral Sentiments) supports a broader view of social cooperation, rooted in the human propensities to trade and to empathize, and coordinated through diverse alloys of commercial and non-commercial exchange.

Find out more about the lecture here.