Adam Smith and Division of Labour

  • Takashi Negishi
Part of the Research Monographs in Japan-U.S. Business & Economics book series (JUSB, volume 6)


Adam Smith, who criticized mercantilists fot their wrong concept of the wealth of nations, considered that the real wealth is the annual produce of the land and labour of the society (Smith [1976], p. 12). According to Smith, furthermore, the high productivity of labour in civilized and thriving nations seems to have been the effects of the division of labour. International trade certainly pre-supposes the division of labour among different countries. As for the nature and causes of international trade, therefore, we can expect to learn very much from Smith’s theory of the divisions of labour. For this purpose, let us have a glance of the content of his Wealth of Nations (1776), which consists of five Books, i.e.,
  1. Book 1:

    Of the Causes of Improvement in the productive Powers of Labour, and of the Order according to which its Produce is naturally distributed among the different Ranks of the People.

  2. Book 2:

    Of the Nature, Accumulation, and Employment of Stock.

  3. Book 3:

    Of the different Progress of Opulence in different Nations.

  4. Book 4:

    Of Systems of political Oeconomy.

  5. Book 5:

    Of the Revenue of the Sovereign or Commonwealth.

An outline of each Book now follows.


International Trade Foreign Trade Natural Rate Invisible Hand Effectual Demand 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Takashi Negishi
    • 1
  1. 1.Aoyama Gakuin UniversityJapan

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