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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/72827

Type: Journal article
Title: Adam Smith on thumos and irrational economic 'man'
Author: Hill, L.
Citation: European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 2012; 19(1):1-22
Publisher: Routledge
Issue Date: 2012
ISSN: 0967-2567
1469-5936
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Lisa Hill
Abstract: The classical origins of Adam Smith's use of the concept of thumos within his social and economic psychology has escaped notice by scholars of his thought. This paper explores the antique provenance and character of thumos in Smith, establishes its dominant role within his social and economic system, and examines how it informed his attitudes to luxury, consumption and wages. The paper also seeks to resolve confusion created by Smith's apparent ambivalence about the irrationality and moral effects of thumos by recourse to his theodicy. In doing so, it shows that thumos-driven agents (unwittingly) sacrifice own utility to system utility.
Rights: © 2012 Taylor & Francis
RMID: 0020117279
DOI: 10.1080/09672561003632550
Appears in Collections:Politics publications
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