"A FIGURE OF GREAT IMPORTANCE IN THE HISTORY OF ECONOMICS AND OF ECONOMIC THOUGHT"
PIGOU, A.C. Socialism Versus Capitalism. London: Macmillan, 1937. Octavo, original tan cloth, original dust jacket.
First edition of a core work by Pigou, "known as the father of modern welfare economics… also one of the founders of modern public finance," a handsome copy in the original dust jacket.
In Socialism versus Capitalism, Pigou ultimately advocates a capitalist system gradually transitioned toward socialism (without drastic change or revolution as in Soviet Russia). A devoted student of Marshall, Pigou is "a figure of great importance in the history of economics and of economic thought" (Kumekawa, First Serious Optimist, 2). He was pivotal in passing on the "Marshallian" tradition of economics at Cambridge and became its most vigorous defender against Keynesian economics. "Known as the father of modern welfare economics, which studies how to make economies operate more efficiently as well as the trade-offs between efficiency and equity, Pigou is also one of the founders of modern public finance" (Pressman, 97-9). He was "the originator of externality theory, the idea that there are costs—like those arising from pollution—that are not explicitly accounted for by the market. His contributions made him a monumental figure in the history of environmental economics, and today his legacy is both palpable and visible" (Kumekawa, 2). New Palgrave III: 876-9.
Light spine toning to dust jacket. A fine copy.