By P. Groenewegen
This succinct evaluation of Marshall's existence and paintings as an economist units his significant fiscal contributions in viewpoint, by way of his schooling, his shuttle, his educating at Cambridge, Oxford and Bristol, his coverage perspectives as offered to executive inquiries and his political and social evaluations.
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Extra resources for Alfred Marshall: Economist 1842–1924
However, on his own account, Marshall carefully balanced concentrated mathematical study as an undergraduate with planned leisure activities consisting of light reading from Shakespeare, Boswell’s life of Johnson and the Agamemnon. This is the import of the story of the sign writer observed in Regent Street at the age of seventeen, that is, when he was on the threshold of his university undergraduate experience in 1861–62. A quarter of an hour of mathematics reading was followed by less demanding reading.
More significantly, Marshall appears to have bought his copy of the 1865 people’s edition of Mill’s Principles of Political Economy, almost certainly the first major book on economics he studied, around this time, and definitely before 1867. As mentioned in the introduction to this chapter, the initial interest in economics was aroused by his desire to assist, as actively as possible, human welfare, particularly that of members of the working class. This aim was partly a consequence of his psychological studies, concerned as it was with the possibilities of the higher and more rapid development of human faculties, and reflected in the potential for improving the experience of ‘ye machine’ through education, including moral education.
6 Other early influences on Marshall’s economics Marshall’s annotations in his copy of Mill occasionally drew attention to some of his other economics reading at this time. The McCulloch edition of Smith’s Wealth of Nations was another economics book studied early, as was the first volume of Marx’s Capital, first published in 1867 when it was purchased by Marshall, and Sargent’s Recent Political Economy, another early favourite of Marshall. In addition, Marshall’s initial economic studies included the text of Ricardo’s Works as edited by McCulloch, giving him access to most of Ricardo’s monetary writings as well as to his Principles of Political Economy and Taxation in the third edition.