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SOCB47H3 (73)


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University of Toronto Scarborough
Vanina Sztainbok

SOCB42 - LEC 1 Agenda - biography of Adam Smith - general themes - causes of wealth - division of labour - capital accumulation - commercial society - money - markets - office hours = thursday 1-3pm B526A Life of Adam Smith (Wealth of Nations) - 1723-1790, Scotland, UK - wealthy business family - studied moral philosophy - then went to Oxford due to sickness - at 28 became professor for moral philosophy - first to give lecs in English (suppose to use Latin in Scotland) - “Moral Sentiments” very famous book, talks about general moral forces influencing human action - his economic book focuses in a corner of world - due to book (Moral Sentiments), got better job as tutor for child of baron - 1776 (which is also American Revolution) - economics book became very influential till today Themes in Book - what is it about? - title = inquiry into nature and causes of the wealth of a nation - nature of wealth of nation = what makes a country rich? - natural resources p.2 = most fertile soil, oil, etc. - stored treasure (cash) - GNP per capita (gross national product per person) - more person can consume, more rich - increase necessities, productiveness - wealth created through social process --> a social product/condition - book purpose = increase productivity in country to increase wealth - causes of wealth of a nation = what mechanisms increase the wealth of nations? - if wealth in natural resources, best way to increase is to take it - way to get rich = go and take it by military strength - if wealth in stored treasure, how to increase gold? - get more gold - mercantilism = exports goods, imports bad - Smith thinks mercantilism will cause country to be poor because wealthy means productivity of its people - universal conditions to increase wealth: - increase division of labour (increase productivity)* - increase proportion of people being productive --> capital accumulation Historical Causes - specific conditions in any country in any given time (why one more productive than the other?) 1. Manufacturing/Commerce vs Agriculture - Smith: agriculture = basis to become wealthy to fullest - but nations that begin as commerce still very wealthy - Smith comeback = these countries began agriculture long time ago 2. Theories - historically powerful - influences on behaviour, affect on their actions - good theory = motivate to become wealthy Nations (back then) - what makes country wealthy? - previous = what makes the dominance wealthy? - patrimonialism: focuses on certain people - rulers suppose to think as servants for country --> called “political economy” - duty of government = growth of economy by increasing people’s skills to become most effective - can work on defense, justice, public works, and taxes Causes of Wealth - Division of Labour 1. What is it 2. What are its different forms/type 3. Why division of labour increases productivity 4. Social consequences of division of labour 5. Causes of division of labour 1. What it it - specialization p.10+11 - “pin making plant” example - divide job into parts 2. Forms/Types - Smith focuses on 2 main ones: - division of employment (jobs, occupations) - division of tasks (t-shirt example) 3. Why DOL increases productivi
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