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Publisher's Summary

When it comes to economics and economic theory, a few thinkers dominate the landscape.

Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Alfred Marshall, John Maynard Keynes, and a handful of others have shaped the world of economics and influenced our lives.

These 10 lectures acquaint you with the thoughts, theories, and lives of these great economists.

You'll grasp the guiding principles of economics through a better understanding of the economists who developed them. In this broad span of time since these thinkers first presented their ideas, economic issues and concerns have changed greatly - but core economic doctrine remains. These lectures provide a fresh take on how various economic theories were formed and how subsequent economists fine-tuned those theories. They show that there are valuable lessons to be learned from history's great economists, whether their theories have held up over time, required revision, or been discredited in practice. And as Professor Taylor leads you through those theories, you'll come away with insight about why some current disputes over economic policy have been continual sources of argument over the last several centuries. By providing a glimpse into the minds of the geniuses who laid the foundations of modern economics, Professor Taylor offers new ideas and perspectives to enhance your understanding of the subject. More than dull numbers and graphs, this series focuses on personalities and brings economics to life.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©1996 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)1996 The Great Courses

What members say

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    5 out of 5 stars

A fine basic survey: a home run for Prof. Taylor

This professor is passionate, obviously engaged with his subject, clear and accessible. This survey moves across many big books full of ideas pretty quickly, so naturally it does not get into the more abstract and technical fine points. But to readily get a good basic feel for these ideas and thinkers (and their writing, which is critiqued a bit, and explained in light of the prevalent ideas of their times), one couldn't start at a better place.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Old lectures

Be warned this is very pro Keynesian. Almost no time is given to any problem with Keynes and he gets Say’s law completely wrong

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Who knew economics could be so captivating?

This is the second series I've listened to by Tim Taylor and I have to rank him right up there with the best of The Great Courses professors. He is easy to listen to. -- energetic, passionate about the subject, and able to explain anything in the simplest of terms.

This series takes you on a marvelously captivating walk through the history of economic thought -- how great minds evolved our thinking to understand what an economy was and what made it work. So from a historical perspective, it provides a fascinating perspective on our evolution as a society.

From an economic and political perspective you will gain wonderful insights. I dare say your friends will think twice about quoting Adam Smith or Karl Marx in your presence once you've finished listening to this; and when politicians quote John Maynard Keynes or Milton Friedman, you'll know which parts are established fact, and which parts remain controversial theory.

these lectures were recorded before the financial crisis of the late 2000s, and I think that's a good thing. You will understand the prevailing theories of macroeconomics and decide for yourself how it applies today.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Everything I wanted and more

A very nuanced story and well narrated. I have learned a lot of things from this lecture.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Impress EVERYONE at the party. Remarkable Course.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Not only do I recommend this course, friends are forced to listen to it on road trips. More often they not, they sign up for Audible to download the full course. Incredibly creative, and intriguing introduction to Economics for beginners and unbelievable tidbits for those who have studied it for years. This is riveting material, that speaks for itself.

What does Professor Timothy Taylor bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His ability to articulate complex ideas is outstanding. Taylor is one of those professors who is extremely passionate about the stories he tells. That passion makes his delivery impossible to ignore. He has an ability to keep me focused and engaged for a long period of time.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

If I had 12 hours in the day to listen to all of it, I would. Professor Taylor's delivery keeps you engaged for as long as you have to listen. This is one of those courses that you will listen to multiple times. I love the ability to pick up anywhere in the course and learn something new.

Any additional comments?

You'll find yourself bringing up stories from this course in multiple social settings. It has made me look like the smartest guy at parties, dinners and the office multiple times. Must read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great Foundations on Important Thinkers

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This is a great book to learn the basics of Economic thought by its founding fathers

What was one of the most memorable moments of Legacies of Great Economists?

Adam Smith

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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History of Economics

The lectures are conversational and the content engaging (for those interested in the history of economics). It's fascinating how some the famous economists have crossed paths and refined their theories through letters and lively debate.

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Good review

If you recommend not to read Smith but then discuss him for an hour was more than annoying. As someone whom purchased the course as a reminder to remain fresh it was a nice review. For someone who has no business or economic background examples of theories would be a good idea just like economy manipulation from which government agency in which country or money exchange manipulation and how it effects the economy on a world scale would be better than a single poor vs rich household.

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Very good summary

Prof. Taylor does a great job. Very useful summary of the subject and the contribution of great economists.

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Excellent background knowledge you must have

Tim's passion keeps you riveted throughout the 10 lectures. Each lecture is an excellent summary of one economist's thought processes and accomplishments--as well as their weaknesses. I will listen to this series more than once, to catch parts I missed and deepen my understanding.

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  • Bobby
  • 03-18-15

Marxist propaganda.

Lack of detail and a lot of waffle. He has a poor understanding of economics. Don't how this can be classed as economics

2 of 6 people found this review helpful