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Capital in the 21st Century: Thomas Piketty

"There is no escaping the fact, however, that social science research on the distribution of wealth was for a long time based on a relatively limited set of firmly established facts together with a wide variety of purely theoretical speculations."
to read the 16-page introduction to Thomas Piketty's "Capital in the 21st Century," click on

 http://www.hup.harvard.edu/features/capital-in-the-twenty-first-century-...

"The distribution of wealth is one of today's most widely discussed and controversial issues. But what do we really know about its evolution over the long term? Do the dynamics of private capital accumulation inevitably lead to the concentration of wealth in ever fewer hands, as Karl Marx believed in the nineteenth century? Or do the balancing forces of growth, competition, and technological progress lead in later stages of development to reduced inequality and greater harmony among the classes, as Simon Kuznets thought in the twentieth century? What do we really know about how wealth and income have evolved since the eighteenth century, and what lessons can we derive from that knowledge for the century now under way?

These are the questions I attempt to answer in this book...

A Debate without Data?

Intellectual and political debate about the distribution of wealth has long been based on an abundance of prejudice and a paucity of fact...

The distribution question also deserves to be studied in a systematic and methodical fashion. Without precisely defined sources, methods, and concepts, it is possible to see everything and its opposite. Some people believe that inequality is always increasing and that the world is by definition always becoming more unjust. Others believe that inequality is naturally decreasing, or that harmony comes about automatically, and that in any case nothing should be done that might risk disturbing this happy equilibrium.

This is from the Harvard University Press who should be appreciated for their generosity.

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Capital Man: Thomas Piketty 28.Apr.2014 07:02

Emily Eakin

Capital Man: Thomas Piketty by Emily Eakin, April 17, 2014 in The Chronicle Review

 http://chronicle.com/article/Capital-Man/146059

Thomas Piketty is economics' biggest sensation. He's also the field's fiercest critic.

The 42-year-old Frenchman had come, like a wonkish heir to de Tocqueville, to tell Americans how to salvage what he called their "egalitarian pioneer ideal" from a potentially devastating "drift toward oligarchy." His anointment was all the more remarkable in that he intended his book not just as a novel argument about inequality but as a pointed rebuke to his field—in particular its American wing.

more at www.freembtranslations.net, www.nextnewdeal.net, www.foreffectivegov.org, www.steadystate.org, www.therealnews.com, www.onthecommons.org and www.storyofstuff.com
Capital Man

Thomas Piketty's new book is not just a novel argument about inequality but a pointed rebuke to his field.

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corrected URL 28.Apr.2014 14:45

marc

to read/download Thomas Piketty's introduction, click on

 link to www.hup.harvard.edu