Murray Rothbard tells us that his gigantic, two-volume work was first envisioned as a “standard Smith-to-the-present moderately sized book, a sort of contra-[Robert] Heilbroner” (p. xv). When we see what has emerged from that plan, a parallel at once springs to mind: Cervantes began Don Quixote as a short story, but he gradually expanded it into one of the great books of the world. Likewise, this “moderately sized book” has become one of the great intellectual enterprises of our age. Indeed, the following review discusses only the first volume.
For Rothbard, the history of economics has an unusually broad scope. To him it includes not only economic theory, but virtually all of intellectual history as well. As he often did in conversation, Murray Rothbard here advances definite and well-thought-out interpretations of major historical controversies. FULL ARTICLE