Robert Skidelsky
Join our Mailing List
to be notified of any updates

Delivered by FeedBurner

Follow me on Twitter
Bookmark and Share
Magazines

Articles from New York Review of Books

The World on a String
New York Review of Books
Robert Skidelsky | Thursday, March 08, 2001

 
 
Open Society: Reforming Global Capitalism
by George Soros
Public Affairs, 365 pp., $26.00
 
George Soros is the best-known financial speculator of our time, godfather of hedge funds, those fast-moving and largely unregulated raiders in the corporate jungle that make their killings from fluctuations in the prices of stocks, commodities, currencies. When he writes books readers might reasonably expect tips on how to make money. They will be disappointed. Soros's ambitions are altogether more exalted. Having become a billionaire, he has set himself up as the philosopher and statesman of global capitalism, tirelessly telling the world that it now needs to remove the ladder by which he himself climbed to fame and fortune. On January 2 he

Continue reading...
Bookmark and Share

What’s Left of Marx?
Robert Skidelsky
New York Review of Books | Thursday, November 16, 2000

 
 
Karl Marx: A Life
by Francis Wheen
Norton, 431 pp., $27.95
 
1.
When Karl Marx was twenty-four, a contemporary wrote of him: "Imagine Rousseau, Voltaire, Holbach, Lessing, Heine and Hegel fused into one person…and you have Dr. Marx." Marx was not one of those brilliant young men who fail to live up to their promise. He produced the most powerful, coherent, and influential secular system of ideas ever devised to explain man's past, analyze his present, and predict his future.
 
What he "fused" together was a dialectical theory of historical stages, a materialist theory of history (in which the struggle of classes replaces Hegel's struggle of ideas in humanity's ascent), an economic and moral critique of capitalist civilization (embodied

Continue reading...
Bookmark and Share

All in the Family
Robert Skidelsky
New York Review of Books | Thursday, May 25, 2000

 
 
Five Sisters: The Langhornes of Virginia
by James Fox
Simon and Schuster, 496 pp., $30.00
 
1.
In the early 1980s, the English writer James Fox was shown a large trunk at his grandfather's house in Northamptonshire covered in Cunard and White Star steamship stickers. On inspection it turned out to contain thousands of letters between the Langhorne sisters, as well as other correspondence, carefully collected and preserved by his grandfather, Robert Brand, who had married one of them. It was a collection, Fox writes, made possible by two or three posts a day and the convention of returning letters to their senders "in time of grief." That first encounter with the trunk has led to his absorbing chronicle of a Virginian family which

Continue reading...
Bookmark and Share

Family Values
Robert Skidelsky
New York Review of Books | Thursday, December 16, 1999

 
The House of Rothschild: The World's Banker, 1849-1999
by Niall Ferguson
Viking, 658 pp., $34.95
 
The House of Rothschild: Money's Prophets, 1798-1848
by Niall Ferguson
Penguin, 518 pp., $18.95 (paper)
 
1.
In his delightful memoirs, the art historian Kenneth Clark recalls that Lord Cunliffe, governor of the Bank of England, came to lunch with his father on August 2, 1914. "There's talk of a war," said Lord Cunliffe, "but it will never happen; the Germans haven't got the credits." Almost a century earlier Gutle Rothschild, widow of Mayer Amschel Rothschild, is supposed to have said of a dispute between England and Prussia, "It won't come to war; my sons won't provide money for it." Niall Ferguson's extraordinary book is both a history

Continue reading...
Bookmark and Share

Giant
Robert Skidelsky
New York Review of Books | Thursday, May 06, 1999

 
Morgan: American Financier
by Jean Strouse
Random House, 796 pp., $34.95
 
When John Pierpont Morgan died in 1913, he was the most powerful banker in the world. As the main conduit for British foreign investment into North America he helped transform the United States from a society of yeoman farmers into an industrial colossus. More controversially, Morgan helped change competitive business into what Lenin called "monopoly capitalism." His bank financed the consolidation of large sectors of the American transportation, steel, and electricity industries. Most of this made economic sense, eliminating destructive competition, stabilizing the market, and lowering costs to the consumer through economies of scale and marketing. But the

Continue reading...
Bookmark and Share
Page 4 of 4 pages « First  <  2 3 4