ADAM SMITH'S OPTIMISTIC TELEOLOGICAL VIEW OF HISTORY

Adam Smith's four-stage theory provides the framework for his writings on history. The fourth stage is the commercial epoch; the culmination of history in this stage is a key component in the conventional interpretation of Adam Smith as a prophet of commercialism. In two historical case studies Smith shows the capacity of commercial society to regenerate itself. This potent capacity suggests that commercial society is inevitable. At a certain point in time it also overcomes the major obstacles to its permanence. Smith's philosophy of history anticipates the end of history views of Kant and Hegel.


Issue Date:
2003
Publication Type:
Working or Discussion Paper
PURL Identifier:
http://purl.umn.edu/23708
Total Pages:
22
Series Statement:
Discussion Paper 03.01




 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-08-24

Fulltext:
Download fulltext
PDF

Rate this document:

Rate this document:
1
2
3
 
(Not yet reviewed)