Thursday, November 5, 2020

A Short History of Adam Smith in Love


Here is the conclusion from a new working paper, Love and Liberty: A Short History of Adam Smith in Love, by F. E. Guerra-Pujol:

 Although Ian Smith Ross famously concluded (2010, p. 228) that “[i]t is to be feared that the biographer can do little more with the topic of Adam Smith’s sex life than contribute a footnote to the history of sublimation,” we should reject this hasty, resigned, and melancholic conclusion, for plenty of primary evidence exists supporting the thesis that the great Adam Smith was all too human, that he fell in love at least twice and perhaps as many as three times during his remarkable life. Whether Doctor Smith was right in wanting to suppress this evidence should be the subject of another paper, but it bears repeating that Adam Smith lived in a radically different world than us, a world between the High Middle Ages and today’s modernity. More specifically to this paper, Adam Smith’s world was one in which intellectual life and sexual activity were strictly monitored by Church elders, and nowhere was the regulation of sexual morality more oppressive than in Adam Smith’s native Scotland, where he lived for most of his life. I thus conclude this paper with the following conjectures: Adam Smith must have resented these religious and intellectual restrictions; perhaps these restrictions were the genesis of Adam Smith’s life-long love and defense of personal liberty.

(ht Tyler Cowen

1 comment:

  1. A Scottish economist's great creation
    Was the epic tome "The Wealth of Nations"
    While horny, the "invisible hand" cried out for masturbation
    The righteous man settled for sublimation