The book also has an active table of contents for readers to access each chapter of the three titles.
1. The Wealth of Nations
2. The Theory of Moral Sentiments
3. Essays on Philosophical Subject
The invisible hand of the market in economics is to describe the self-regulating behavior of the marketplace. However, the concept was not phrased in the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith. Adam Smith first introduced the concept of invisible hand of the market in The Theory of Moral Sentiments, written in 1759. The idea of markets automatically channeling self-interest toward socially desirable ends becomes the foundation of the theory of small government today in the world.
In The Theory of Moral Sentiments, Smith first speaks of An Invisible Hand as the follows:
“The rich only select from the heap what is most precious and agreeable. They consume little more than the poor, and in spite of their natural selfishness and rapacity, though they mean only their own conveniency, though the sole end which they propose from the labours of all the thousands whom they employ, be the gratification of their own vain and insatiable desires, they divide with the poor the produce of all their improvements. They are led by an invisible hand to make nearly the same distribution of the necessaries of life, which would have been made, had the earth been divided into equal portions among all its inhabitants, and thus without intending it, without knowing it, advance the interest of the society, and afford means to the multiplication of the species.”
In The Wealth of Nations, Smith speaks of An Invisible Hand as the follows:
“He generally, indeed, neither intends to promote the public interest, nor knows how much he is promoting it. By preferring the support of domestic to that of foreign industry, he intends only his own security; and by directing that industry in such a manner as its produce may be of the greatest value, he intends only his own gain, and he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention.”
Only in The History of Astronomy, Smith speaks of The Invisible Hand as the follows:
“Fire burns, and water refreshes; heavy bodies descend, and lighter substances fly upwards, by the necessity of their own nature; nor was the invisible hand of Jupiter ever apprehended to be employed in those matters.”
The book by Adam Smith speaks of Invisible Hand from different perspectives and presents a complete picture about Smith’s Invisible Hand. After more than two centuries, Smith's work still stands as the best statement and defense of the fundamental principles of capitalism. The book is already read more than two hundred years and it will still be read for another century due to its truths.
This book is for the readers who need to learn and study Invisible Hand of free market from the perspectives of natural law, economic law, and moral law.