This volume consists of 17 of Ludwig Lachmann’s most important papers published during the period 1940-73. He is a scholar whose wisdom matches his years, but whose energy and sense of intellectual excitement is that of a far younger man. Hayek, whose works have influenced both Professor Lachmann and myself. Ambacher, who helped to translate into English the two originally German articles included in this collection, and for Walter Block, who helped during the early stages of preparation of this volume.Two of the articles appear here in translation for the first time. He is a veritable fountain of knowledge, a never-ending stream of economic insight, which is always offered in his unique and curiously wonderful style. Professors Kirzner and Rothbard especially lent their support and encouragement throughout the project. A special thanks goes to the hard-working general editor of this series of Austrian works, Laurence S. Last, but certainly not least, I would like to thank my patient wife, Mary Jane Grinder, for her help in typing the manuscript.
"Many excellent papers are significantly shorter than that.
Please do not lard your essay with complex terminology.
But by the time the second paper comes due, the more common difficulty is choosing which of several interesting questions to pursue.
The paper is not a complete substitute for the traditional syllabus.
The idea grew out of my participation in an early pilot program in Writing in the Disciplines, a new pedagogical movement that promises to revolutionize the learning process at every level.
The aim of the program, which was sponsored by the John S. Knight Foundation, was to encourage students to write about concepts they were grappling with in the various disciplines.The economic-naturalist writing assignment plays to this strength. Real progress in both cases comes only from speaking.The economic-naturalist papers induce students to search out interesting economic stories in the world around them.Prepared especially for this volume is a new essay about the present “crisis” in economic thought. The Lachmann style combines a magisterial gusto with an omnipresent and delightfully amused twinkle in his eye. I wish to thank the following publications and publishers for reprint permission: For more than fifty years Ludwig M.Walter Grinder’s extended introduction analyzes Lachmann’s scholarly career in four countries and his overall intellectual development. There is no end of those to whom I should like to offer my thanks. Next I must thank my other Austrian mentors: Israel M. Lachmann has been participating in scholarly debates on the development and application of economic theory; yet he is relatively unknown to professional economists and the intellectual community at large.Imagine yourself talking to a relative who has never had a course in economics.The best papers are ones that would be clearly intelligible to such a person, and typically these papers do not use any algebra or graphs."Over the years, my students have posed and answered literally thousands of fascinating questions.Each garment would thus be rented only infrequently, perhaps just once every four or five years.So the company would have to charge a rental fee greater than the purchase price of the garment just to cover its costs.Daniel Boorstin, the former librarian of Congress, used to rise at 5 each morning and write for two hours before going into the office. "After all, the bars aren't open that early." Mr.Boorstin's morning sessions were even more valuable than he realized.