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Unformatted text preview: The impetus for change arrived when French economist François Quesnay (1694–1774) explained in his Tableau Économique (1758) that a natural order of trade, with limited government intervention, would be much more beneficial to both society and the individual. This idea was subsequently elaborated upon and popularized by Scottish economist Adam Smith (1723–1790) in his landmark Wealth of Nations (1776), which established the nature of economics in three laws: first, that people work more productively when they have self-interest; second, that competition leads to a balanced marketplace; and third, that true supply and demand are a product of free trade. Smith’s advocacy of this laissez-faire (“hands-off”) economics, as it came to be called, was revolutionary at the time. Simply put, Smith insisted that it is when individuals are most unburdened by trade regulation that they will be most prosperous, because a free...
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This note was uploaded on 12/12/2011 for the course HIST 1320 taught by Professor Murphy during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.
- Fall '08