It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.–Adam Smith, 1776
Adam Smith was a Scottish social philosopher and a pioneer of political economy. One of the key figures of the Scottish Enlightenment, Smith is the author of The Theory of Moral Sentiments and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations. An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, generally referred to by its shortened title “The Wealth of Nations,” is the magnum opus of the Scottish economist and moral philosopher Adam Smith. First published in 1776, it is a reflection on economics at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution and argues that free market economies are more productive and beneficial to their societies. The book is a fundamental work in classical economics.