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    Adam Smith


    Історичні особистості

    Irkutsk State University

    Sociology Faculty


    Student: Poleh Andrew
    Group: 15131

    Irkutsk 1999

    Early Life

    The exact date of Smith's birthday is unknown, it is reputed that he wasborn on June 5, 1723, in Kikcaldy, a small (population 1,500) village near
    Edinburgh. Of Smith's childhood nothing is known other than that hereceived his elementary schooling in Kirkcaldy.
    At the age of 14, in 1737, Smith entered the university of Glasgow. There,he was deeply influenced by Francis Hutcheson, a famous professor of moralphilosophy. In 1740, Smith won a scholarship and travelled on horseback to
    Oxford, where he stayed at Balliol College. In that time Oxford was one ofthe bigger education centers in Great Britain. His years there were spentlargely in self-education, from which Smith obtained both classical andcontemporary philosophy.
    Returning to his home after an absence of six years, Smith cast about forsuitable employment. The connections of his mother's family, together withthe support of the jurist and philosopher Lord Henry Kames, resulted in anopportunity to give a series of public lectures in Edinburgh.

    The lectures, which ranged over a wide variety of subjects from rhetorichistory and economics, made a deep impression on some of Smith's notablecontemporaries. They also had a marked influence on Smith's own career. In
    1751, at the age of 27, he was appointed professor of logic at Glasgow,from which post he transferred in 1752 to the more remunerativeprofessorship of moral philosophy, a subject that embraced the relatedfields of natural theology, ethics, jurisprudence, and political economy.


    During the week he lectured daily from 7:00 to 8:00 am and again thriceweekly from 11 am to noon, to classes of up to 90 students, at the age ofabout sixteen years. Afternoons were occupied with university affairs inwhich Smith played an active role, being elected dean of faculty in 1758;his evenings were spent in the stimulating company of Glasgow society.
    Among his friends were not only members of the aristocracy, many connectedwith the government, but also a range of intellectual and scientificfigures that included Joseph Black, a pioneer in the field of chemistry,
    James Watt, one of the best engineer of that days and many others.

    The Theory of Moral Sentiments

    In 1759 Smith Published his first work, The Theory of Moral Sentiments. Init Smith with other leading philosophers of his time described theprinciples of "human nature". He wrote in his Moral Sentiments the famousobservation that he was to repeat later in The Wealth of Nations: that self -seeking men are often "led by an invisible hand ... without knowing it,without intending it, to advance the interest of the society. "

    Travels on the Continent

    The Theory quickly brought Smith wide esteem and in particular attentionof many famous people. Smith resigned his Glasgow post in 1763 and set offfor France. In France he lived about 18 months. After that he went to
    Geneva, and worked there. After Geneva he returned to London were heworked until the spring of 1767. In that period he was elected a fellowof the Royal Society. His intellectual circle included Edmund Burke, Samuel
    Johnson, Edward Gibbon, and perhaps Benjamin Franklin. Late that year hereturned to Kirkcaldy, where the next six years were spent dictating andreworking The Wealth of Nations, published in 1776 in London.

    The Wealth of Nations (Дослідження про природу і причини багатства народу) and economic growth.

    It was the first great work in political economy. The Wealth of Nations isin fact a continuation of the philosophical theme begun in The Theory of
    Moral Sentiments.

    Smith's analysis of the market as a self-correcting mechanism wasimpressive. But his purpose was more ambitious than to demonstrate the self -adjusting properties of the system. Rather, it was to show that, under theimpetus of the acquisitive drive, the annual flow of national wealth couldbe seen steadily to grow. Smith's explanation of economic growth, althoughnot neatly assembled in one part of The Wealth of Nations. It is quiteclear.

    The Wealth of Nations was received many grants. It was the success.
    Smith was therefore quite well off in the final years of his life, whichwere spent mainly in Edinburgh with occasional trips to London or Glasgow
    (which appointed him a rector of the university). Smith never married, andalmost nothing is known of his personal side. On July 17, 1790, at the ageof 67, full of honours and recognition, Smith died; he was buried in thechurchyard in his native village with a simple monument stating that Adam
    Smith, author of The Wealth of Nations, was buried there.

    John Rae. "Life of Adam Smith" 1985
    William Scott. "Adam Smith as Student and Professor" 1987
    Andrew S. Skinner. "Essays on Adam Smith" 1988

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