Distributor:  Icarus Films
Length:  53 minutes
Date:  2015
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English; French
Color/BW:  Color
Closed captioning available
Interactive transcript available
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The Wealth of Nations: A New Gospel?

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Adam Smith was both economist and moral philosopher. But his work on morality is largely forgotten, leading to tragic distortions that have shaped our global economic system. (Episode 2 of the Capitalism series)

The Wealth of Nations: A New Gospel?

Adam Smith published two books in his life. The Wealth of Nations is a global bestseller that has never been out of print, while The Theory of Moral Sentiments is largely forgotten.

This episode of CAPITALISM argues that disconnecting Smith the economist from Smith the moral philosopher has led to tragic distortions that have profoundly shaped our global economic system.

Divided into easy-to-use sections on the division of labor, self-interest, and the tyranny of control, THE WEALTH OF NATIONS: A NEW GOSPEL lays bare the moral dilemma at the heart of The Wealth of Nations : the human cost of achieving a purely efficient free market system.

This episode convincingly argues that the intellectual foundations of current market economics are largely based on a misinterpretation of Smith's words. It argues that Smith did not favour a completely unregulated free market - in fact, he thought it would be disastrous - and that the underpinnings of contemporary capitalism lie instead in an ideology born in the 19th century, that privileges greed over other equally deep-seated human drives.

Featuring interviews with Noam Chomsky, economist Ha-Joon Chang, and Smith biographer Nicholas Phillipson, among others - as well as archival footage of free market luminaries such as Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman.

"A captivating epic... a major contribution to economic and social reflection." —Le Monde (France)

 

"Brings clarity to confusion, makes complexities accessible, and produces a clear narrative of a system that seems opaque to most people." —Journal du Dimanche (France)

 

"Masterly... is going to revolutionize our vision of the economic world." —La Vie (France)

 

"In first look CAPITALISM seems like the economics class you should have skipped.... but in a second look CAPITALISM is the seminar that you must take in the second semester ... the point of view is very different and surprising, the result is an impressive, visually rich series.” —Israel HaYom (Israel)

 

"Should not be missed! Combines highly educational explanations of concepts, economic history and contemporary life, to create a series of documentaries, each of which it is difficult to stop watching!" —Alternatives Economiques (France)

 

"10 Stars! A truly captivating series that delves into history, philosophy, investigates four corners of the planet, and stimulates the viewer with a re-examination of the basic concepts that define our lives." —Globes (Israel)

 

The series was chosen as one of the ten best programs in France in 2014.

Citation

Main credits

Clarke, George T. (narrator)
Ziv, Ilan (film director)
Ziv, Ilan (film producer)
Ziv, Ilan (screenwriter)
Nahon, Bruno (screenwriter)
Nahon, Bruno (film producer)
Cadieux, Paul (film producer)

Other credits

Director of photography, Phillipe, Bellaiche; editor, David Le Guerrier; original music, Robert-Marcel Lepage.


Distributor credits

By Ilan Ziv

Docuseek2 subjects

Capitalism
Business
Business Ethics
Economics
Sociology
Western Europe
Globalization
Historiography
World History
Labor Studies
Philosophy, Critical Thinking and Ethics
Politics and Political Science
Political Philosophy

Distributor subjects

Business
Business Ethics
Business and Economics
Economics
Economic Sociology
Europe (West)
Globalization
Historiography
History (World)
Labor Studies
Philosophy
Political Science
Political Theory
Politics
Sociology

Keywords

; "Episode 2"; Icarus Films; capitalism

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