Analysis Of The Prodigal Adam Smith And The Lesser Known Bernard Mandeville

1971 Words Jan 27th, 2015 null Page
The pre-industrial era was one of new lands, new wealth, and new ideas. It was a time where growth seemed not only sustainable, but rather necessary and admirable. That being the case, many an author sought to understand this new growth, to make it applicable to the their fellow citizenry, to guide the thoughts of those around them in the way they saw best fit for the benefit of society. Through these various thought experiments, our authors came to manifest seemingly radical notions of wealth and self-governance. Two of those who sought to tackle such topics were the prodigal Adam Smith and the lesser-known Bernard Mandeville. Each of these men sought to guide the will of their fellow citizens in terms of his or her use of their profits. Though both of the authors may have been seen to have similar notions for the use of this profit, it shall be evident that how Mandeville seeks to guide profit is fairly radical and awesome, however it is also quite frivolous and potentially detrimental when the true interests of business are seen in the context of Adam Smith. When thinking of a citizen’s propensity towards excess in monetary gains, which we refer to as profit, Bernard Mandeville saw luxury spending as a form of great and equalizing, redistribution of profit. He believed such spending was a means to express this wealth upon society. Mandeville claims that in his time, “It is a receiv’d Notion, that Luxury is as destructive to the Wealth of the whole Body Politic, as it…

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