Inspired by his lectures on rhetoric and by game theory, this book provides a new interpretation of Adam Smith’s system of thought. It highlights its coherence through the identification of three reasoning routines and a meta-reasoning routine throughout his work on languages, rhetoric, moral sentiments, self-command, and the nature and causes of the wealth of nations. The identification of these reasoning routines allows the authors to uncover a hitherto poorly understood deep structure of Smith’s work and to explain its main characteristics. How these routines emerged in Smith’s early research on the principles of the human mind is also traced.
This book sheds new light on Adam Smith and his work, highlighting his sophisticated understanding of strategic interaction in all things rhetorical, moral, and economic. It will be relevant to students and researchers interested in the history of ideas, the history of economic thought, game theory, Enlightenment studies, and rhetoric.