Diderot and the EconomyBy Guy Caire
Diderot was a philosopher, not an economist. However, numerous comments in his work allow us to place him in relation to the different schools of thought of his time. The Prospectus or the Foreword to the Encyclopedia place economics on the tree of knowledge tree. As a branch of philosophy and within the field of morals, economics deals with the government of people and the management of goods. Like biology, economics relies on the experimental method, which connects observation, hypotheses, and verification. In his political struggle, Diderot assigns to economics and to the "enlightened despot" specific objectives in numerous fields, including agriculture, taxation, trade, markets, education, and justice).