Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Milton Friedman  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1912 in Brookyln, New York


Illinois Connection

Milton Friedman was a Nobel Prize winning economist who taught at the University of Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Besides the Nobel Prize, Mr. Friedman was a senior research fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University and the Paul Snowden Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of Econmics at the Univesity of Chicago. His economic theories and the "Chicago School" of economics had great impact in the last half of the twentieth century on the economic policies of many nations.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Money Mischief: Episodes in Monetary History
ISBN: 015661930X

Mariner Books. 1994

Friedman makes clear once and for all that no one is immune from monetary economics-that is, from the effects of its theory and its practices. He demonstrates through historical events the mischief that can result from misunderstanding the monetary system. Index.

Capitalism and Freedom: Fortieth Anniversary Edition
ISBN: 0226264211

University of Chicago Press. 2002

Selected by the Times Literary Supplement as one of the "hundred most influential books since the war"

How can we benefit from the promise of government while avoiding the threat it poses to individual freedom? In this classic book, Milton Friedman provides the definitive statement of his immensely influential economic philosophy—one in which competitive capitalism serves as both a device for achieving economic freedom and a necessary condition for political freedom. The result is an accessible text that has sold well over half a million copies in English, has been translated into eighteen languages, and shows every sign of becoming more and more influential as time goes on.

Free to Choose: A Personal Statement
ISBN: 0156334607

Mariner Books. 1990

The international bestseller on the extent to which personal freedom has been eroded by government regulations and agencies while personal prosperity has been undermined by government spending and economic controls. New Foreword by the Authors


Why Government Is the Problem (Essays in Public Policy)
ISBN: 0817954422

Hoover Institution Press. 1993

The major social problems of the United States—deteriorating education, lawlessness and crime, homelessness, the collapse of family values, the crisis in medical care—have been produced by well-intended actions of government. That is easy to document. The difficult task is understanding why government is the problem. The power of special interests arising from the concentrated benefits of most government actions and their dispersed costs is only part of the answer. A more fundamental part is the difference between the self-interest of individuals when they are engaged in the private sector and the self-interest of the same individuals when they are engaged in the government sector. The result is a government system that is no longer controlled by "we, the people." Instead of Lincoln's government "of the people, by the people, and for the people," we now have a government "of the people, by the bureaucrats, for the bureaucrats," including the elected representatives who have become bureaucrats. At the moment, term limits apear to be the reform that promises to be most effective in curbing Leviathan.

A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960
ISBN: 0691003548

Princeton University Press. 1971

Writing in the June 1965 issue of theEconomic Journal, Harry G. Johnson begins with a sentence seemingly calibrated to the scale of the book he set himself to review: "The long-awaited monetary history of the United States by Friedman and Schwartz is in every sense of the term a monumental scholarly achievement--monumental in its sheer bulk, monumental in the definitiveness of its treatment of innumerable issues, large and small . . . monumental, above all, in the theoretical and statistical effort and ingenuity that have been brought to bear on the solution of complex and subtle economic issues."

Friedman and Schwartz marshaled massive historical data and sharp analytics to support the claim that monetary policy--steady control of the money supply--matters profoundly in the management of the nation's economy, especially in navigating serious economic fluctuations. In their influential chapter 7, The Great Contraction--which Princeton published in 1965 as a separate paperback--they address the central economic event of the century, the Depression. According to Hugh Rockoff, writing in January 1965: "If Great Depressions could be prevented through timely actions by the monetary authority (or by a monetary rule), as Friedman and Schwartz had contended, then the case for market economies was measurably stronger."

Milton Friedman won the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1976 for work related to A Monetary History as well as to his other Princeton University Press book, A Theory of the Consumption Function (1957).

Price Theory
ISBN: 1607961512

The Richest Man in Babylon. 2009

Economics is sometimes divided into two parts: positive economics and normative economics. The former deals with how the economic problem is solved, while the latter deals with how the economic problem should be solved. The effects of price or rent control on the distribution of income are problems of positive economics. The desirability of these effects on income distribution is a problem of normative economics. Within economics, the major division is between monetary theory and price theory. Monetary theory deals with the level of prices in general, with cyclical and other fluctuations in total output, total employment, and the like. Price theory deals with the allocation of resources among different uses, the price of one item relative to another. Prices do three kinds of things. They transmit information, they provide an incentive to users of resources to be guided by this information, and they provide an incentive to owners of resources to follow this information. Milton Friedman's classic book provides the theoretical underpinning for and understanding of prices. Economics is not concerned solely with economic problems. It is a social science, and is therefore concerned primarily with those economic problems whose solutions involve the cooperation and interaction of different individuals. It is concerned with problems involving a single individual only insofar as the individual's behavior has implications for or effects upon other individuals. "Price Theory" is concerned not with economic problems in the abstract, but with how a particular society solves its economic problems.

Milton Friedman on Economics: Selected Papers
ISBN: 0226263495

University of Chicago Press Journals. 2008

On his death in the autumn of 2006, Milton Friedman was lauded as “the grandmaster of free-market economic theory in the postwar era” by the New York Times and “the most influential economist of the second half of the 20th century” by the Economist. Winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1976, Friedman was both a highly respected economist and a prominent public intellectual, the leader of a revolution in economic and political thought that argued robustly in favor of virtues of free markets and laissez-faire policies.

Milton Friedman on Economics: Selected Papers collects a variety of Friedman’s papers on topics in economics that were originally published in the Journal of Political Economy. Opening with Friedman’s 1977 Nobel Lecture, the volume spans nearly the whole of his career, incorporating papers from as early as 1948 and as late as 1990. An excellent introduction to Friedman’s economic thought, Milton Friedman will be essential for anyone tracing the course of twentieth-century economics and politics.

Bright Promises, Dismal Performance: An Economist's Protest
ISBN: 0156141612

Mariner Books. 1983

The Nobel Prize winner writes here on current issues of prevailing concern to every American citizen and taxpayer, displaying the powers of analysis and expression that have made him one of the most widely respected economists in America. Edited and with an Introduction by William R. Allen.

The Great Contraction, 1929-1933 (Princeton Classic Editions)
ISBN: 0691137943

Princeton University Press. 2008

Friedman and Schwartz's A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960, published in 1963, stands as one of the most influential economics books of the twentieth century. A landmark achievement, the book marshaled massive historical data and sharp analytics to support the claim that monetary policy--steady control of the money supply--matters profoundly in the management of the nation's economy, especially in navigating serious economic fluctuations. The chapter entitled "The Great Contraction, 1929-33" addressed the central economic event of the century, the Great Depression. Published as a stand-alone paperback in 1965, The Great Contraction, 1929-1933 argued that the Federal Reserve could have stemmed the severity of the Depression, but failed to exercise its role of managing the monetary system and ameliorating banking panics. The book served as a clarion call to the monetarist school of thought by emphasizing the importance of the money supply in the functioning of the economy--a concept that has come to inform the actions of central banks worldwide.

This edition of the original text includes a new preface by Anna Jacobson Schwartz, as well as a new introduction by the economist Peter Bernstein. It also reprints comments from the current Federal Reserve chairman, Ben Bernanke, originally made on the occasion of Milton Friedman's 90th birthday, on the enduring influence of Friedman and Schwartz's work and vision.

Two Lucky People: Memoirs
ISBN: 0226264149

University Of Chicago Press. 1998

In Two Lucky People, Rose and Milton Friedman provide a memorable and lively account of their lives, the people they knew, and the work they shared. Their involvement with world leaders and many of this century's most important public policy issues moves their memoir beyond the merely personal and makes fascinating reading for anyone interested in the history of twentieth-century ideas.

"The Friedmans come across as the last Enlightenment thinkers in a post-modern world. . . . This is a book that restores your faith in reasoned discourse. . . . There really are people who believe in scholarly exchange as a way to discover truth."—David Brooks, New York Times Book Review

"The Friedmans are a feisty couple, who clearly delight in their lives and each other. And shining through their reticence, and their conservatism, is a decency that even liberals will recognize."—Milton and Judith Viorst, Washington Post Book World

"This engaging book recounts the life and contributions of one of America's most influential writers and economists in the second half of the twentieth century. And her husband's no slouch either. . . . An indispensable guide through the evolution of economic thought."—Stephen Moore, National Review

"A thought-provoking book and one rich in history, the personal history of the Friedmans . . . and the cultural and political history of our country."—Steve Huntley, Chicago Sun-Times Books

"[Two Lucky People] is almost like a letter from a couple of old friends—a couple of old friends who had a long, compelling intellectual journey, came to know some of the great world leaders of this century, and had 60 years of happy, supportive marriage."—N. Gregory Mankiw, Fortune

"A rich autobiographical and historical panorama."—William P. Kucewicz, Wall Street Journal



Nobel Prize -- Economics,