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The Theory of Moral Sentiments (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 6 May 2010

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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; Anv edition (6 May 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143105922
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143105923
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.2 x 19.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 66,030 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"One of the truly outstanding books in the intellectual history of the world...A global manifesto of profound significance to the interdependent world in which we live. It is indeed a book of amazing reach and contemporary relevance." -Amartya Sen, from the Introduction

Book Description

Adam Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments is a text of central importance in the history of moral and political thought. This 2002 volume offers a new edition of the text with helpful notes for the student reader, together with a substantial introduction that sets the work in its philosophical and historical context. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Michael Mooney VINE VOICE on 21 Aug. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the book which made Smith's name, and in which he first mentioned the much-misunderstood "Invisible Hand". It's essential reading as an antidote to the "101-ist" perception of Smith as a supporter of unfettered capitalism. It starts from the observation that we all feel sympathy for the suffering of others, and joy in their joy, and explores how society is best ordered to maximise sharing benefits with all.

This was also Smith's last book - he worked on the revised edition until just before his death.

A bonus in this edition, and one worth paying the price of the book for, is Amyrata Sen's introduction, which stands as a better defence of Smith than any amount of backhanded compliments showered on him by the apologists of Wall Street.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. C. L. Newman on 17 Aug. 2013
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Like few others both before or after him, Adam Smith stands out as a writer of both practical common sense and more philosophical and thought provoking argument and judgement.

Some ideas and views are never good for any time; few stand the test of time. Adam Smith's both stand as good - and pass the test - possibly for all time.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Haraldo Wenceslas on 31 Jan. 2013
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I've no doubt that 'The Theory of Moral Sentiments' is a seminal text, but for the love of the almighty, get a different edition to this one. Herein lies numerous spelling and grammatical errors, as it seems to have been based upon a third-rate scanning of another edition of the text.
You have been warned.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By D. W. Reap on 17 Oct. 2012
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How regrettable that I have only just absorbed this wonderful work. It should be compulsory reading for all students and intellectuals no matter what age whether studying economics or not.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By PlayerPianoPlayer on 1 Feb. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This books is a masterpiece, not only of philosophical ethics, but also of social psychology. It recasts ethics by examining the psychology of why people think some actions good and other actions bad. It's examination of these psychological factors is both incisive and pretty exhaustive.

At times, it contains pre-echoes of the ideas of modern evolutionary psychologists, as in the following passage: "Thus self-preservation, and the propagation of the species, are the great ends which Nature seems to have proposed in the formation of all animals. Mankind are endowed with a desire of those ends, and an aversion to the contrary; with a love of life, and a dread of dissolution; with a desire of the continuance and perpetuity of the species, and with an aversion to the thoughts of its intire extinction. But though we are in this manner endowed with a very strong desire of those ends, it has not been intrusted to the slow and uncertain determinations of our reason, to find out the proper means of bringing them about. Nature has directed us to the greater part of these by original and immediate instincts." These instincts are brought to bear in explaining, among other things, why parents are more likely to be excessive than deficient in love for their children, and why we are horrified by the deficiency, but tolerant of the excess. That's classic Evo Psych, a hundred years before Darwin.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By COK on 3 April 2014
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I can see what they are trying to do here, but this really is an atrocious scan of the book. Avoid.
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