THE DISSEMINATION OF THE WEALTH OF NATIONS IN FRENCH AND IN FRANCE 1776-1843.

  • New York: The Bibliographical Society of America, 2002.
  • 8vo.
  • cloth
  • lxii, (i), 255+(1) pages
  • ISBN: 9780914930174
  • ISBN: 9780914930174

Price: $45.00  other currencies

Order Nr. 68967

First edition. Adam Smith's great work of political economy reached French readers through reprints of English editions; a number of translations directed towards different audiences; and a host of summaries, extracts and reviews in magazines and journals. Combining cultural history and bibliographical analysis, Carpenter traces the transmission of this text and assesses the implications of its paratext - occurring in reviews and advertisements, and in the front matter, footnotes, format, and typography of more than thirty monographs and periodicals. He provides full bibliographical descriptions necessary for identifying these works and understanding their interpretative agenda, as well as extensive quotations showing how translators, commentators, editors, and publishers mediated Adam Smith's ideas. This publishing history also serves as an anthology of contemporary critical response to a text at first marginalized by the government and the book trade, then adopted by intellectuals seeking an ideological basis for the French Revolution, and ultimately established as a canonical work of economic thought requiring commentary and scholarly apparatus. An extensive introductory essay describes the textual transformation of the French editions and explains how French readers sought in them "a tool for creating a new society." With thirteen black-and-white illustrations and an index.

THE DISSEMINATION OF THE WEALTH OF NATIONS IN FRENCH AND IN FRANCE 1776-1843. Kenneth E. Carpenter.