Summary of Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy

Harper Perennial,
First Edition: 1942 more...

Buy the book

Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy book summary
Economist Schumpeter called capitalism "creative destruction," and said it would self-destruct from stagnation and revolt.

Rating

9 Overall

4 Applicability

10 Innovation

8 Style

Recommendation

Economist Joseph A. Schumpeter’s keen intellect makes some of today’s scholarship sound like the spouting of ideology on talk shows. Some consider him the greatest economist of the twentieth century. Only an intellect of his towering stature would be able to present a case that while Marx was wrong about how capitalism would collapse, he was probably correct that it eventually would. Schumpeter also contends that socialism may eclipse free-market economies, news he feels society should greet with angst. He believed that capitalism’s doom would proceed not from a revolution by an angry proletariat, but rather as a result of successes that would give rise to a class of elites who would gradually institute systems of central control. Fully understanding this complex, although non-mathematical, treatise may require some background; it is not a book for the novice. While this 1942 classic may seem dated in spots, those who conclude that it is time to tap dance on socialism’s grave should consider that Schumpeter expected socialism’s dominance to take a century or more. getAbstract.com recommends this classic to anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the historic, economic case for the rise of socialism.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why socialism is the likely heir to capitalism
  • How capitalism’s economic success, not its stagnation, will bring about its demise
  • How capitalism is a process of creative destruction
  • How Schumpeter critiques Marx
 

Summary

Will Capitalism Die?
Was Karl Marx right? If so, was he also wrong? Marx was correct that capitalist economies tend to destroy themselves. He was incorrect that this process occurs due to the economic instabilities that capitalism inherently generates. And Marx’s “theory of vanishing investment...
Get the key points from this book in less than 10 minutes. Learn more about our products or log in

About the Author

Joseph A. Schumpeter was born in 1883 in the present Czech Republic. He taught anthropology at the University of Czernowitz (in modern-day Ukraine). He served as Austria's minister of finance from 1919 to 1920, as president of the Biederman Bank for the next four years, and as a professor at the University of Bonn from 1925 to 1932, when he relocated to Harvard. In 1933, he became the founding president of the Econometric Society. He taught at Harvard until his death in 1950. His magnum opus, History of Economic Analysis, was published posthumously in 1954.


Comment on this summary

More on this topic

Contained in Knowledge Pack:

Customers who read this summary also read

More by category