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Invisible Hands – Self-Organization in the Eighteenth Century - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Invisible Hands: Self-Organization in the Eighteenth Century

Jonathan Sheehan and Dror Wahrman


Invisible Hands proposes a new synthesis of eighteenth-century intellectual and cultural developments that focuses on a new way of thinking about order and disorder. The book charts how, in the eighteenth century, Europeans reimagined the nature and origins of the many orders that they inhabited: natural, social, political, economic, and cognitive. In place of a universe governed by orderly connections between cause and effect and designed by a providential Divinity, this alternative vision combined a recognition of the world's disorder and chance with a new appreciation for complexity, new un ... More

Keywords: self-organization, eighteenth century, causality, complexity, order, disorder, invisible hand, providence, emergence

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780226752051
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2016 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226233741.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jonathan Sheehan, author

Dror Wahrman, author