The Road to Serfdom



A robust critique of the now fashionable idea of corporate social responsibility

The Reader's Digest Condensed Version
This publication is no longer for sale. Please see our updated version of Road to Serfdom, including Intellectuals and Socialism, here.

In the last years of World War II, Friedrich Hayek wrote ‘The Road to Serfdom’. He warned the allies that policy proposals which were being canvassed for the post-war world ran the risk of destroying the very freedom for which they were fighting. On the basis of ‘as in war, so in peace’, economists and others were arguing that the government should plan all economic activity. Such planning, Hayek argued, would be incompatible with liberty, and had been at the very heart of the movements that had established both communism and Nazism.

On its publication in 1944, the book caused a sensation. Neither its British nor its American publisher could keep up with demand, owing to wartime paper rationing. Then, in 1945, Reader’s Digest published ‘The Road to Serfdom’ as the condensed book in its April edition. For the first and still the only time, the condensed book was placed at the front of the magazine instead of the back. Hayek found himself a celebrity, addressing a mass market.

The condensed edition was republished for the first time by the IEA in 1999 and has been reissued to meet the continuing demand for its enduringly relevant and accessible message.

2001, Occasional Paper 122, ISBN 0 255 36530 6, 83pp, PB

See also:

The Road to Serfdom with The Intellectuals and Socialism by F. A. Hayek.

The Confusion of Language in Political Thought by F. A. Hayek

Economic Freedom and Representative Government by F. A. Hayek.

Choice in Currency: A Way to Stop Inflation by F. A. Hayek.

Denationalisation of Money by F. A. Hayek

A Tiger by the Tail: The Keynesian Legacy of Inflation by F. A. Hayek

Adam Smith – A Primer by Eamonn Butler.

Material about Hayek on the IEA blog

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