The Road to Serfdom

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The Reader’s Digest condensed version of

The Road to Serfdom

The Road to Serfdom
FRIEDRICH A. HAYEK The condensed version of The Road to Serfdom by F. A. Hayek as it appeared in the April 1945 edition of Reader’s Digest

The Institute of Economic Affairs

First published in Great Britain in 1999 in the ‘Rediscovered Riches’ series by The Institute of Economic Affairs 2 Lord North Street Westminster London sw1p 3lb Reissued in the ‘Occasional Paper’ series in 2001 This condensed version of The Road to Serfdom © Reader’s Digest, reproduced by kind permission The Road to Serfdom is published in all territories outside the USA by Routledge. This version is published by kind permission. All other material copyright © The Institute of Economic Affairs 1999, 2001 Every effort has been made to contact the copyright holders associated with this edition. In some cases this has not been possible. The IEA will be pleased to include any corrections in the next edition. All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the publisher of this book. A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. isbn 0 255 36530 6 Many IEA publications are translated into languages other than English or are reprinted. Permission to translate or to reprint should be sought from the General Director at the address above. Typeset in Stone by MacGuru info@macguru.org.uk Printed and bound in Great Britain by Hobbs the Printers

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin

CONTENTS

The authors Foreword by Edwin J. Feulner Jr Introduction: Hayek, Fisher and The Road to Serfdom by John Blundell Preface to the Reader’s Digest condensed version of The Road to Serfdom Summary The Road to Serfdom (condensed version) Planning and power Background to danger The liberal way of planning The great utopia Why the worst get on top Planning vs. the Rule of Law Is planning ‘inevitable’? Can planning free us from care? Two kinds of security Towards a better world The Road to Serfdom in cartoons About the IEA

9 11 14 26 27 31 32 34 37 39 43 49 51 53 58 62 63 82

THE AUTHORS

Friedrich A. Hayek

Friedrich A. Hayek (1899–1992) was born in Vienna and obtained two doctorates from the University of Vienna, in law and political economy. He worked under Ludwig von Mises at the Austrian Institute for Business Cycle Research, and from 1929 to 1931 was a lecturer in economics at the University of Vienna. His first book, Monetary Theory and the Trade Cycle, was published in 1929. In 1931 Hayek was made Tooke Professor of Economic Science and Statistics at the London School of Economics, and in 1950 he was appointed Professor of Social and Moral Sciences at the University of Chicago. In 1962 he was appointed Professor of Political Economy at the University of Freiburg where he became Professor Emeritus in 1967. Hayek was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 1944, and in 1947 he organised the conference in Switzerland which resulted in the creation of the Mont Pélerin Society. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1974 and was created a Companion of Honour in 1984. In 1991 George Bush awarded Hayek the Presidential Medal of Freedom. His books include The Pure Theory of Capital, 1941, The Road to Serfdom, 1944, The Counter-Revolution of Science, 1952, The Constitution of Liberty, 1960, Law, Legislation and Liberty, 1973–9, and The Fatal Conceit, 1988.

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the road to serfdom

John Blundell

John Blundell is General Director of the Institute of Economic Affairs. He was previously President of the Institute for Humane Studies...
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