John Kenneth Galbraith

John Kenneth Galbraith (găl´brāth), 1908–2006, American economist and public official, b. Ontario, Canada, grad. Univ. of Toronto (B.S., 1931), Univ. of California, Berkeley (M.S., 1933; Ph.D., 1934). After becoming (1937) a U.S. citizen and teaching economics at Harvard (1934–39) and Princeton (1939–40), he entered government service, working (1941–43) in the Office of Price Administration. He was an editor of Fortune magazine from 1943–48, also serving on the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey (1945) and in other governmental advisory posts before returning (1949) to Harvard. An adviser to Democratic presidents from Franklin D. Roosevelt to Bill Clinton, most prominently to John F. Kennedy, he also was (1961–63) U.S. ambassador to India. He rejoined the Harvard faculty in 1963 (he became a professor emeritus in 1975) and continued his political activities, serving (1967–69) as chairman of Americans for Democratic Action. A Keynesian economist and a celebrated liberal, Galbraith advocated government spending to fight unemployment, supported the use of more of the nation's wealth for public services and less for private consumption, and warned against an unregulated free-market system. An influential thinker and a popularizer of economic thought, he wrote more than 40 books including American Capitalism (1952), The Great Crash 1929 (1955), The Affluent Society (1958, rev. ed. 1985), The Liberal Hour (1960), The New Industrial State (1967, rev. ed. 1971), Economics and the Public Purpose (1973), The Good Society (1997), and The Economics of Innocent Fraud (2004). A witty and urbane man with wide-ranging interests, he also wrote a book on Indian art (1968) and several novels.

See his memoir, The Scotch (1964, repr. 1985); autobiography, A Life in Our Times (1981); Ambassador's Journal (1969); and history, Name-Dropping: From FDR On (1999); J. Goodman, ed., Letters to Kennedy/John Kenneth Galbraith (1998); J. R. and J. B. Stanfield, ed., Interviews with John Kenneth Galbraith (2004); A. D. Williams, ed., The Essential Galbraith (2001); biography by R. Parker (2005); studies by C. H. Hession (1972), M. E. Sharpe (1973), A. D. Williams (1979), D. Reisman (1980), J. R. Stanfield (1996), H. Sasson, ed. (1999), and B. Laperche and D. Uzunidis, ed. (2005).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

John Kenneth Galbraith: Selected full-text books and articles

Perspectives on 20th Century America: Readings and Commentary By Otis L. Graham Jr Dodd, Mead, 1973
Librarian's tip: Chap. 6 "The Causes of the Great Depression" by John Kenneth Galbraith
Perspectives on Conservation: Essays on America's Natural Resources By Henry Jarrett Johns Hopkins Press, 1958
Librarian's tip: "How Much Should a Country Consume?" by John Kenneth Galbraith begins on p. 89
The Anxieties of Affluence: Critiques of American Consumer Culture, 1939-1979 By Daniel Horowitz University of Massachusetts Press, 2004
Librarian's tip: Chap. 4 "Critique from Within: John Kenneth Galbraith, Vance Packard, and Betty Friedan"
Why Aren't Economists as Important as Garbagemen? Essays on the State of Economics By David Colander M. E. Sharpe, 1991
Librarian's tip: Chap. 8 "Galbraith and the Theory of Price Control"
John Kenneth Galbraith By Pal, Amitabh The Progressive, Vol. 64, No. 10, October 2000
Free Market Fraud By Galbraith, John Kenneth The Progressive, Vol. 63, No. 1, January 1999
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