Hayek: A Life, 1899–1950 (Hardcover)

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The definitive account of the distinguished economist’s formative years.

Few twentieth-century figures have been lionized and vilified in such equal measure as Friedrich Hayek—economist, social theorist, leader of the Austrian school of economics, and champion of classical liberalism. Hayek’s erudite arguments in support of individualism and the market economy have attracted a devout following, including many at the levers of power in business and government. Critics, meanwhile, cast Hayek as the intellectual forefather of “neoliberalism” and of all the evils they associate with that pernicious doctrine. 

In Hayek: A Life, historians of economics Bruce Caldwell and Hansjörg Klausinger draw on never-before-seen archival and family material to produce an authoritative account of the influential economist’s first five decades. This includes portrayals of his early career in Vienna; his relationships in London and Cambridge; his family disputes; and definitive accounts of the creation of The Road to Serfdom and of the founding meeting of the Mont Pèlerin Society. 

A landmark work of history and biography, Hayek: A Life is a major contribution both to our cultural accounting of a towering figure and to intellectual history itself. 

About the Author

Bruce Caldwell is research professor of economics and the director of the Center for the History of Political Economy at Duke University. He is the general editor of the Collected Works of F. A. Hayek series, also published by the University of Chicago Press. 

Hansjoerg Klausinger is associate professor emeritus in the Department of Economics at WU Vienna University of Economics and Business.

Praise For…

“A magnificent achievement. Caldwell and Klausinger bring Hayek alive; they also bring his world alive. This is riveting reading, taken as biography, and it’s much more than that. It casts a bright new light on Hayek’s era, and on our own.”
— Cass R. Sunstein, coauthor of 'Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness'

Hayek: A Life, 1899–1950 is a triumph of both scholarship and biography. Caldwell and Klausinger have given us an instant classic, sure to stimulate and enrich debates about this most controversial, and still misunderstood, economist and social philosopher.”
— Joel Isaac, author of 'Working Knowledge: Making the Human Sciences from Parsons to Kuhn'

"Admirers and opponents of Hayek alike will find much to savor in this deeply researched, sweeping biography. Even readers who well know Hayek and his times will be enlightened and enriched."
— Jennifer Burns, author of 'Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right'

Hayek: A Life, 1899–1950 is brilliant, comprehensive, and engaging. For any historian, social scientist, or philosopher interested in how ideas shaped the twentieth century and how the events of the twentieth century framed intellectual discourse, this is a must-read."
— Peter Boettke, author of 'Living Economics: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow'

“By far the most careful and comprehensive treatment of his early life and works, Hayek: A Life, 1899–1950 is an invaluable resource, full of remarkable discoveries.”
— Angus Burgin, author of 'The Great Persuasion: Reinventing Free Markets since the Depression'

Product Details
ISBN: 9780226816821
ISBN-10: 0226816826
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: November 10th, 2022
Pages: 824