The Passions and the Interests has ratings and 31 reviews. unperspicacious said: Hirschman is a beast. I was hoping to find a few nuggets on the phil. In this volume, Albert Hirschman reconstructs the intellectual climate of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to illuminate the intricate ideological trans.. . In this volume, Albert Hirschman reconstructs the intellectualclimate of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to illuminatethe intricate ideological transfo .

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How nasty can we afford to be to hte human beings if acting in such a way damages our material interest? It also raises the issue that as capital is threaten, so too may be liberty, as those with capital prefer law and order over freedom.

ComiXology Thousands of Digital Comics. Interesting perspective regarding that overview. Hirschman was in some sense a student of irony.

I feel, yeah bro great job!! The Passions and the Interests: One, their language and selection of words is very fancy and they go over-romantic sometimes and try as you might but you’ll lose them. Augustine to Friedman- a well written, complete and logical interpretation of the motivations and incentives which are the foundations of capitalism. Very good summary of the intellectual currents that lead from the early Christian view that the pursuit of money is less than virtuous, to the view that pursuit of self-interest in the form of commerce is beneficial to human freedom by its necessary restraint on the power of the state.

Aug 24, Matt rated it really liked it Shelves: This book is a brisk perusal of intellectual history from Machiavelli to late 18th century.

By showing that the same arguments about the relative strengths of the passions and the interests were central to early writers in capitalism’s history as modern writers, we should probably be less inclined toward the view that “capitalism changes everything” and normative political economy should start from a blank slate.

Hirschman offers a tge intellectual history oassions capitalism anv which, rather than revolution of bourgeois paasions against aristocratic ones, the spirit of capitalism was actually the result of a revolution in thinking among elites about the relative merits of the passions and the interests. Keohane, Journal of Interdisciplinary History. For, as Hirschman shows, we live in a society that is shaped by ideas and expectations. In the end, Hirschman provides a salutary lesson for the history of ideas: In this framework, capitalism was justified by showing how capitalism, harnessing the power of self-interest and greed, can dominate other harmful passions and lead human society to progress.


Of course, before the dawn of capitalism, the pursuit of economic interests was considered one of the worst passions; avarice was always a foe of the Platonic conception of Reason and the Christian view of the Truth. Tocqueville, for example, worried that self-interest would draw less talent into politics and increase opportunities for bad leaders. Nevertheless, with the decline of feudalism and the rise of absolutist monarchies, the great concern of thinkers like Hobbes is the rising power of the state and the passions that lead monarchs and their states into ruinous external and civil wars.

Start reading The Passions and the Interests on your Kindle in under a minute. Augustine to Friedman- a well written, Dec 24, Yognik rated ths liked it.

It was difficult at some points to make sense of the language the author uses, but overall was a fascinating read and gave me a passikns to think about. This in turn allowed the analysis of political economy based on private gain that accompanied the rise of capitalism in late 18th century. Nov 21, Humphrey rated it it was amazing. This is a book that should be widely read, and I would recommend it to anyone remotely interested in the emergence of the capitalist system.

Not for everybody, for sure, and there’s a large “so what? One needn’t have a thorough background in Western political philosophy to make sense of it, but if your response is anything like pzssions, you will want to make haste to the nearest library to delve into the theory you don’t hirsdhman.

Albert O. Hirschman’s The Passions and the Interests | Wheat from the Chaff Blog –

Quotation of the Week: Hirschman develops a compelling narrative centered on the historical development of the intellectual impulses that gave rise to Capitalism. This text is fantastic.


Please try again later. See and discover other items: My Old Blog Contact Me! To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. His insights and especially his de-demonizing of Machiavelli, give hope for a world and it’s people who deserve better than the current models hirscgman they capitalist, socialist or communist.

The Passions and the Interests: Political Arguments for Capitalism Before Its Triumph

A wonderful analysis with insights derived from the study of Machiavelli, Hume, Bacon, Spinoza, Smith, Montesquieu, and unterests from the Scottish Enlightenment and the French physiocrats. I should think the key idea of this nuanced knterests comes from the Cardinal de Retz, who says that “interest governs the world.

One, their language and selection of words is very fancy and they go He takes time to come to the point. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. A really impressive text. English Choose a language for shopping. These early arguments about the ability of self-interest to restrain interewts passions and constrain power hungry political leaders have not held up under the weight of history, but as Hirshman notes, we see more contemporary thinkers fall back on these ideas.

Hirschman also deals with the effects thee like Montesquieu and Steuart foresaw for self-interest on politics, and why these effects might be ambivalent. Interesting book, well written, of economic history.

Welch on April 26, — Leave a Comment. The author wishes to highlight an intellectual process whereby the question of the earlier period, how to manage passionate people now that religion doesn’t seem to work, gave rise to the idea that one can subsume the motives of men to one overarching idea of “interest”.