Published online by Cambridge University Press: 25 August 2021
As sociologists, we view capitalism and its optimal needs differently from conventional economists. Ironically, however, our own perspective draws on the work of well-known early economists – sociologically astute, but often misunderstood or neglected in economics today. Those earlier economists provide us with most of the important building blocks for our argument. They also remind us that the foundations of economics are fundamentally different from the widespread contemporary belief that markets work best when political and social forces do not interfere with them. The historical perspective suggests that this contemporary view is wrong and that putting it into practice has caused serious economic damage.