Friday, July 03, 2009

Sam Fleischacker Wins Prestigious Award

Brian Leiter announces in Leiter Reports: a philosophy blog HERE carries this great news:

Fleischacker Wins 2009 Gittler Award from APA

Samuel Fleischacker (Illinois/Chicago) has won the 2009 Gittler Award from the APA for work in philosophy of the social sciences for his 2005 book On Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations: A Philosophical Companion (Princeton University Press)

Sam Fleischacker’s deserved award from the American Philosophical Association is great news for those interested in restoring the legacy of Adam Smith’s from the mess it has been dragged into by modern economists since the 1950s.

And it took a philosopher to do it!

Modern economists have for so long believed in the Chicago 'Adam Smith', who has little in common with the Adam Smith who was born in Kirkcaldy in 1723. Chicago's version is almost unrecognisable to anybody with the slightest acquaintance with Moral Sentiments (1759) or Wealth Of Nations (1776).

I am personally very pleased for Sam Fleischacker, having met him on several occasions at academic conferences. He is a formidable authority on Adam Smith’s moral philosophy and his political economy.

I read his “Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations: A Philosophical Companion” (Princeton University Press) with great enthusiasm and the further I read into it, his understanding of the real Adam Smith became ever more evident.

If any serious student of Adam Smith wants to read an authoritative, intellectual and engaging account of Wealth of Nations, then an investment in his ‘companion’ text cannot be bettered.

Economists need not be put of by prejudices against philosophers and their overly stylistic reputations (from which Sam is exempted) and philosophers need not be repelled by his treatment of a subject matter outside his professional discipline; both will learn a lot more than they anticipate.

The American Philosophical Association deserve our congratulations for awarding their prize to someone who has done much to restore Adam Smith’s legacy.

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