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Author’s Preface - Israel M. Kirzner, The Economic Point of View 
The Economic Point of View: An Essay in the History of Economic Thought, ed. with an Introduction by Laurence S. Moss (Kansas City: Sheed Andrews McMeel, 1976).
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The present essay is an attempt to explore with some thoroughness an extremely narrow area within the field of the history of economic thought. Although this area is narrow, it merits a scrutiny quite out of proportion to its extension, relating as it does to fundamental ideas around which the entire corpus of economic thought has revolved for some two centuries. It remains as true today as ever before that the direction taken by economic theory is in large measure determined by the “point of view” adopted by the economist as his special perspective. It is in this connection that the present study seeks to make its contribution, by setting up the problem in its proper context as a chapter in the history of ideas.
The nature of the subject matter, in this instance, has made thoroughness in its exploration a matter of extreme difficulty, exhaustiveness a sheer impossibility. In general my aim has been to provide a careful survey of the literature relevant to each of the ideas treated, while resolutely refusing to succumb to those imperious temptations which would have turned my book into an annotated bibliography. This has frequently moved me to refrain from mentioning works of considerable importance in order to avoid fruitless repetition of ideas already cited from other sources. Despite the self-restraint exercised in this regard, I have felt it wise to relegate all notes and references to the end of the book, in order to make for a smoother account in the body of the work.
My exploration of the subject dealt with in this book began several years ago while writing my doctoral dissertation under Professor Mises. Much of the material gathered in my work on that project has provided a useful foundation for the broader investigation undertaken in preparation for the present volume. Grateful appreciation is here accorded for the assistance which enabled me to pursue my researches at that time, first as Volker Fellow, and then as an Earhart Fellow, at New York University.
My intellectual debt to the unique contributions made by Professor Mises to the epistemological problems discussed in my book is, I believe, sufficiently evident throughout the work itself. Here I take particular pleasure in recording the friendly patience and warm encouragement which he has shown me unstintingly throughout the project, as well as the inspiration which I have derived from his own enthusiasm and penetrating integrity of thought, as unfolded in countless discussions, both privately and in seminar.
I have benefited on numerous occasions from highly valuable discussions on various aspects of the study with my colleagues in the Department of Economics, School of Commerce, New York University. I am, in addition, particularly grateful to Dean T. L. Norton and Professor T. J. Anderson, Chairman of the Department, for making special arrangements to lighten my teaching duties during a part of the time spent in research on this project, as well as for their constant encouragement during its completion. Valuable assistance in connection with questions of style and clarity of expression has been gratefully received from Dr. Arthur Goddard. Responsibility for the shortcomings of the work is, of course, undividedly my own.
I have, finally, the pleasant if somewhat difficult task of acknowledging my wife’s contribution, both tangible and intangible, to the emergence of the volume. My indebtedness in this regard (as well as the difficulty of its expression) is the deeper for the peculiar circumstance that the altogether indispensable nature of this contribution is itself in large measure to be ascribed to conditions rendering it at the same time exceptionally meritorious.