Bad Samaritans

Ha-Joon Chang

Bad Samaritans



Download offline

Add to library

Buy the book

In Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism, Ha-Joon Chang highlights the weaknesses of the free market, and explains how Western economic ideas hinder the growth of developing countries. Behind their charitable generosity, advanced nations push struggling countries to adopt detrimental and short-sighted economic policies. The author analyses these mechanisms, and proposes solutions to change tack and fix this, for good.

read more

read less


Analysis and key concepts


South Korea is often seen as an example of neo-liberal victory, but there is actually a much more complex system behind the country’s economic development


Developed countries intervene in the economic systems of poorer countries by implementing policies that often turn out to be ineffective


We often mistakenly think that countries become rich because they embrace liberalism


Several trade agreements were signed in the 1980s that encouraged free trade, but they weakened the already fragile economies of poor countries


For a long time, Finland’s economic policy restricted foreign capital intervention, and this enabled the country to become strong and competitive


Vilifying state enterprises can be narrow-minded, because they often have many characteristics in common with private companies


Rich countries often refuse to help poor nations, because they believe they are corrupt, but corruption does not necessarily make a country irredeemable


Neo-liberalists maintain that the combination of democracy and free markets leads to economic growth, but this theory is not entirely correct


Saying that some countries will inevitably fail economically simply because of their culture is misguided and discriminatory


In order to achieve wealth, poor countries need to challenge the market and focus on their manufacturing industries




Take-home message

Unlock this and thousands more with 4books Premium!

You'll have 7 days free, and if you're not satisfied after 30 days, you can get your money back.

Many useful tips to:

  • Learn more about the mechanisms that regulate the free market and their weaknesses.
  • Discover how the economic policies of the richest states affect poorer countries.
  • Reflect on the most deeply-rooted beliefs about the free market.

Born in 1963 in Seoul, South Korea, Ha-Joon Chang is an economist and teaches at Cambridge University, where he also completed his studies. Throughout his career, he has written numerous articles and texts on capitalism, free markets, and industry. His books have been translated into forty languages. In 2003, he won the prestigious Gunnar Myrdal Prize for economists, and the Wassily Leontief Prize in 2005. He has also worked as a consultant for The World Bank and Oxfam, an international confederation of non-profit organisations based in Oxford, England.

Publishing house:

Bloomsbury Publishing