David Ricardo was the leading political economist of the early nineteenth century. This book presents a reconstruction of the substance and evolution of Ricardo's thought on the interrelated topics of value, distribution and accumulation. It also provides a detailed summary of, and critical commentary on, the vast secondary literature. The author rejects Sraffa's influential 'corn model' interpretation of Ricardo's early writings; the alleged similarity between the work of Ricardo and Sraffa; the Hollander and Hicks view of Ricardo's treatment of wages; and the neoclassical interpretation of Marshall and others. He also addresses the role of Ricardo's labour theory of value in his analysis, and Marx's interpretation of it. Dr Peach argues that Ricardo's work has been persistently, and sometimes wilfully, misinterpreted, and that this can be remedied only through an attempt to understand Ricardo's writings in his terms, taking account of his objectives.
• A survey of the substance and evolution David Ricardo's economic thought, and the various interpretations of it by economists since • Ricardo was one of the great political economists, ranking alongside Adam Smith and Karl Marx; he was also one of the richest entrepreneurs of his day • This book is unique in describing Ricardo's work in its own terms rather than those of the economic theories which followed
1. Interpretations of David Ricardo; 2. From bullion to corn: the early writings; 3. The falling rate of profit, wages, and the law of markets; 4. The labour theory of value (i); 5. The labour theory of value (ii); 6. The appropriation of Ricardo; 7. Concluding remarks.
Review of the hardback: 'In this exhilarating book, Terry Peach brilliantly rehabilitates the orthodox view of 'what Ricardo really meant' but not without taking due notice of the one-quarter truth of the 'new view'.' Mark Blaug, History of Economic Thought