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Frédéric Bastiat

Milton Friedman

F. A. Hayek

Henry Hazlitt

Carl Menger

Ludwig von Mises

Robert Nozick

Ayn Rand

Murray Rothbard

Adam Smith

Murray Rothbard

An academic and author who played a important role in the revival of the Austrian School of Economics and in the rebirth of libertarian and classical liberal ideas during the twentieth century, Murray Rothbard will be forever known as perhaps the most vocal American-born anti-statist of the post World War II-era.


After earning his PhD in economics from Columbia University in 1956, Rothbard embarked on a lifetime endeavor of to expand upon the intellectual contributions of his teacher and mentor, Ludwig von Mises.


Rothbard’s body of work consists of more than 20 books, including Man, Economy and State (1962), America’s Great Depression (1963) as well as a four-volume magnum opus, Conceived in Liberty (1975), which is his monumental study of America’s early colonial history. Rothbard also leaves a legacy of innumerable op-eds, columns, and letters-to-the- editor.


Rothbard was an important figure Austrian school of economics, which notes that markets are ongoing processes in time and stresses the crucial role of knowledge in economic affairs and the importance of both entrepreneurs and institutions in creating a market order. Rothbard’s association with the Austrian school started when, as a graduate student in New York City, Rothbard attended lectures by Ludwig von Mises, an economist in the Austrian tradition. Von Mises had fled to America in the late 1930s to escape Nazi persecution of Jews. Rothbard was won over to the Austrian school’s understanding that what really matters in economics (as he once put it) is “the logical analysis of the implications of human action.”


In addition to his academic work, Rothbard was an active participant on editorial pages and in the popular press. He argued that many commentators were not sufficiently attuned to the growth of government during the Cold War. Rothbard’s contention was that it made little sense to fight socialism abroad, but tolerate its growth at home in the form of an expanding welfare state.


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Full bio:
Anatomy of the State:
Man, Economy, and State:
America’s Great Depression: