Elements of Pure Economics. Or, The Theory of Social Wealth.

WALRAS Léon (1954.)

£375.00  [First Edition]

Available to view at our Curzon Street shop.

Translated by William Jaffé. First edition in English. 8vo. 620 pp. Original turquoise cloth, spine lettered and ruled in gilt, dust jacket (some faint partial offsetting to endpapers, some very light foxing to spine panel of jacket, otherwise a near fine copy). London, Published for The American Economic Association and The Royal Economic Society by George Allen & Unwin, Ltd.

'Walras' Elements of Pure Economics was monstrously neglected everywhere despite his indefatigable efforts to get the book noticed. That was in part because Walras set himself a task that went beyond Jevons and Menger, his co-discoveres of marginal utility theory, namely, to write down and solve the first multi-equational model of general equilibrium in all markets. In addition, Walras went far beyond Jevons in employing a mathematical mode of expression, and this was enough to scare off most of his contemporary readers. But whereas Jevons and Menger are now regarded as historical landmarks, rarely read purely for their own sake, posthumous appreciation of Walras's monumental achievement has grown so markedly since the 1930s that he may now be the most widely-read nineteenth-century economist after Ricardo and Marx, particularly since the translation of Elements into English in 1954' (Blaug).

'Walras' two-part Elements of Pure Economics (1844-77) was monstrously neglected everywhere despite his indefatigable efforts to get the book noticed. That was in part because Walras set himself a task that went beyond Jevons and Menger, his co-discoveres of marginal utility theory, namely, to write down and solve the first multi-equational model of general equilibrium in all markets. In addition, Walras went far beyond Jevons in employing a mathematical mode of expression, and this was enough to scare off most of his contemporary readers. But whereas Jevons and Menger are now regarded as historical landmarks, rarely read purely for their own sake, posthumous appreciation of Walras's monumental achievement has grown so markedly since the 1930s that he may now be the most widely-read nineteenth-century economist after Ricardo and Marx, particularly since the translation of Elements into English in 1954' (Blaug).

Schumpeter would proclaim that 'As far as pure theory is concerned, Walras is in my opinion the greatest of all economists' (quoted in Blaug, Great economists before Keynes, p. 264).

Stock Code: 239642

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