Anarchy, State and Public Choice/Anarchy and the Law: The Political Economy of Choice

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					166                                                                                           Book Reviews


Anarchy, State and Public Choice
Edward P. Stringham, ed.
                         New Thinking in Political Economy Series. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2005. 229 pp.

                                                                       ISBN 1845422406 (hardcover), $130.00.



Anarchy and the Law: The Political Economy of Choice
Edward P. Stringham, ed.
      Independent Studies in Political Economy Series. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2007. 698 pp.

                                      ISBN 0765803305 (cloth), $89.95; ISBN 1412805791 (paperback), $39.95.




T
         he American tradition of individualist anarchism usually receives less
         attention in anthologies than European anarchism, primarily because
         its early practitioners left behind a more meager written heritage, and
because, although they were generally part of the dawn of utopian socialism
in the United States, they stuck to their individualistic stance. But if that origi-
nal tradition barely holds its own, then the rise of private property anarchism
in the United States has received even less academic attention, primarily
because its champions tend to walk the halls of economics departments and
speak in a disciplinary language (including the language of calculus) not
necessarily accessible to the rest of us. These two edited volumes remedy
the situation by providing many definitive papers in conversation with one
another. They testify to the depth of thought and counterthought that this
radical American tradition has generated since the 1970s.
    In the 1970s, the individualist anarchist tradition reemerged as anarcho-
capitalism, an indication that its two chief proponents—Murray Rothbard
(1926–1995) and David Friedman (b.1945)–were economists. However,
Rothbard’s For A New Liberty (1972) and Friedman’s The Machinery of Freedom
(1973) were highly readable and very exciting because they were passionate and
righteous in their tone and prospered within the rising libertarian movement
in the Uni
				
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