The agreeable eye

an eudæmonistarchives


A black dog, stretched out on a shabby quilt, looks blankly at the viewer.

The more they are instructed, the less liable they are to the delusions of enthusiasm and superstition, which, among ignorant nations frequently occasion the most dreadful disorders. An instructed and intelligent people, besides, are always more decent and orderly than an ignorant and stupid one.

—Adam Smith (…Wealth of Nations, vol. 2, p. 424)

I am informed that I may have suggested Adam Smith lacks an authorial voice that could be described as strident or overpowering (or commanding in anyway). That is not the case. His tone – the imperturbable reasonableness, the sly irony, the unexpected humor – is one of his great attractions. Certainly he is not as openly funny as Marx nor so boldly bitter in his criticisms, but he can be just as acute and occasionally more cutting.


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