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Lecture

Lecture 2


Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOCB42H3
Professor
Dan Silver

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-1The General Themes of The Wealth Of Nations and it‘s Agenda:
à one thing about Smith, is that he was a brilliant writer (every step of the way unfolds
logically on to the next. Everything he says in the book is in the title)
Book One:
Nature and Causes of the wealth of nations:
-- nature of wealth: he contrasts his definition of what it means to be rich, and he goes
through two alternatives of what it means to be rich: 1. Natural resource (we have control
over them, for ex: oil) 2. Stored treasure (cash)
GNP (gross national product)/capital = how much does a country produce that’s available
for use by its people. The higher it is the richer you are
- understanding the social conditions that enhance human labour power, and those that
make us less productive (organize ourselves with others) what happens to society once
we unleash those powers? What does it do to everything else, family structure, religion,
politics?
Causes of wealth:
Those three theories at the top about the nature of wealth, lead to getting wealth.
universal ways to get rich:
1) productivity of labour
2) proportion of pop. Employed in productive labour
Historical cause of wealth:
1) the stress a country gives on manufacturing and commerce VS agriculture (he thinks
you should develop agriculture first, then manufacturing and commerce)
2) theories:
the theory you have about what makes a country rich or not, is what you use. So if it
sucks, you aren’t getting rich. (exports good, imports can - birkism [random])
Nation:
How can the king get rich?
He’s reimaging the purpose of politics - it is not to increase the wealth of the individual
persons, it’s to think about the governments role in enhancing the entire nation. [role of
politics in the economy]
Division of Labour:
What is it?
- specialization, dividing things up so people do specific tasks/jobs
Ex: pin makers. If you take a bunch of unskilled people and you line them up and each
one does a separate part, then they can make thousands of pins a day.
2. What are it’s forms?
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