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Joseph A. Schumpeter His Life and Work by Richard Swedberg

Joseph A. Schumpeter His Life and Work


Joseph A. Schumpeter His Life and Work by Richard Swedberg

Joseph A. Schumpeter (1883-1950) is one of the most celebrated authors on the economics and sociology of the twentieth century. Richard Swedberg's new biography provides an engaging and vivid account of Schumpeter's varied life, including his ventures into politics and private banking as well as his academic career. As a backdrop to these, Swedberg also discusses Schumpeter's tragic personal life. This book provides a thorough overview of Schumpeter's writings, and also introduces previously unpublished material based on his letters and interviews. Swedberg emphasizes that Schumpeter saw economics as a form of social investigation, consisting of four fields: economic theory, economic sociology, economic history and statistics. The author describes and analyses Schumpeter's theory of social classes and modern states as well as his more famous theory of the entrepreneur.


'Swedberg ... skilfully explores the links between Schumpeter's work, his personality and his times.'
Financial Times

'Schumpeter's life is shot through with a drama which Swedberg skilfully interweaves with a discussion of his work.'

'[Swedberg] thoughtfully uncovers different layers of the eminent economist's personality... a lucid, readable study'
New York Times Book Review

'The Swedberg biography is a remarkable broad based achievement. It offers a coherant thesis and argues that thesis well. I recommend this biography without hesitation to anyone interested in Joseph A. Schumpter, social scientist and human being.'
Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics

'Richard Swedberg's account of Schumpeter's life and work provides the more complete portrait of Schumpeter, both as man and economist. Swedberg ... marshalls a wealth of biographical detail and straddles several academic disciplines.'
Times Literary Supplement

'Swedberg provides an intellectual biography which is illuminating both about Schumpeter's life in Vienna, Bonn, and Harvard, and the development of his ideas.'
Political Studies

About the Author

Richard Swedberg has edited and introduced an edition of Schumpeter's texts entitled Joseph A. Schumpeter: The Economics and Sociology of Capitalism (Princeton University Press, 1990/1).

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Book Info

Publication date

1st April 1993


Richard Swedberg

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Polity Press


304 pages


Biography: business & industry
Sociology & anthropology



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