The Big Three in Economics: Adam Smith, Karl Marx and John Maynard Keynes

Big Three in Economics: Adam Smith, Karl Marx and John Maynard Keynes
(M.E. Sharpe, 2007)

(Now available on Kindle at!)

The Big Three in Economics, a fascinating new book by Dr. Mark Skousen, Ph.D., is based on the latest historical data and”tell-all” biographies, woven into a cunning plot filled with unexpected twists and turns, and reveals the lives and ideas of the three greatest economic thinkers of all time: Adam Smith, whose invisible hand concept and vision of rich and poor flourishing together under laissez faire and an unfettered market;

Karl Marx, whose radical solution to the problem of exploitation of the underpriviledged appealed to workers and intellectuals around the globe; and

John Maynard Keynes, whose theoretical approach to remedy a crisis-prone market system through activist government policies seemed a perfect solution to the Great Depression.

Pendulum or Totem Pole?

Mark Skousen with the Totem Pole of Economics

Mark Skousen with the Totem Pole of Economics

Are all economic theories equally valid?

Is government-controlled economy on par with free market capitalism?

Until now, references to “right” and “left” indicated a level playing field when it came to validity of an economic theory, with popularity to various approaches swinging back and forth like a pendulum. But in The Big Three in Economics, Dr. Mark Skousen ponders the concept of economic theories in terms of a totem pole, ranking the economic theories in an ascending order.

But has capitalism had a total victory? What challenges have yet to be answered by the free market? What lessons can capitalism still learn from the questions and theories put forth by communism and macro-economics?

The Big Three in Economics is a enlightening and fascinating read for business leaders, economics professors and economics students alike.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Adam Smith Launches an Economic Revolution in 1776
Chapter 2. From Smith to Marx: The Rise and Fall of Classical Economics
Chapter 3. Karl Marx Leads a Revolt Against Capitalism
Chapter 4. From Marx to Keynes: Scientific Economics Comes of Age
Chapter 5. John Maynard Keynes: Capitalism Faces Its Greatest Challenge
Chapter 6. A Turning Point in Twentieth-Century Economics
Chapter 7. Conclusion: Has Smith Triumphed Over Marx and Keynes?

What They’re Saying About The Big Three in Economics

“A curious, enlightening and creative account of the world’s three mostinfluential economists, and why their theories have had such a huge impact on the economic history of the modern world.”
— Robert J. Shiller, Stanley B. Resor Professor Economics, Yale University

“Economics is emerging in the 21st century as the most dynamic of all the social sciences, and who is being resurrected as a guide to understanding? Non other than Adam Smith himsel, and the two giants who followed in his shadow. Three cheers for The Big Three in Economics!”
— Michael Shermer, publisher, Skeptic magazine; columnist Scientific American, author, Why People Believe Weird Things and Why Darwin Matters

“I love Mark Skousen’s book about the history of economics — it is so interesting and well written, and helps us visualize the big picture.”
— Jeremy J. Siegel, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

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