An Analysis Of Lawrence Reed 's ' Great Myths Of The Great Depression '

Good Essays
Historian Research Paper: Lawrence Reed

Samuel Joyce
11 October, 2015
Period C 1-2 Historian Lawrence Reed is an Austrian economist who holds a Master of Arts in history from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. He served as a professor of economics at Northwood University in Michigan from 1977 to 1984, chairing the department for his last three years. He then moved into the world of think tanks, becoming president of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. He stayed in that job for twenty years before assuming the presidency of the Foundation for Economic Education. He holds honorary doctorates from Central Michigan University and Northwood University.

Theory Reed’s book, Great Myths of the Great Depression, attempts to argue that the stock market crash of 1929 was merely a normal economic occurrence. Instead, it was government policies enacted in response that exacerbated and prolonged the economic effects of the crash. In effect, Reed’s thesis flips the conventional view on its head: instead of being the cause, free-market capitalism would have naturally solved the issues that led to the Great Depression. Conversely, government intervention was a cause of, rather than a solution to, the economic hardships that resulted.

Summary of Evidence Reed begins his argument by discussing the conditions immediately following the crash, noting that several previous recessions had occurred, but all lasted for four years or
Get Access