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Adam Smith

Adam Smith is one of America’s leading commentators on finance and the economy. For 13 years, he was the host of the Emmy-winning weekly PBS television show Adam Smith’s Money World.

Beyond Belief by Elaine Pagels (Vintage, $13). The implications in this quiet, understated book are revolutionary. It centers around the Gospel of Thomas. Didn’t know there was such a thing? In the second century, the familiar four were declared the true Gospels; all else was heresy and to be burned. But some manuscripts were preserved, hidden, and recently rediscovered—among them the fragmented gospel of “doubting” Thomas.

The Way We Live Now by Anthony Trollope (Oxford, $12). Sure, Enron was fiction, World Com was a scam, and Martha Stewart’s trial was followed daily by millions. The atmosphere in London in the 1870s was similar, so the great Trollope created a promoter of a nonexistent railroad who gives parties as lavish as those of Tyco’s Dennis Koslowski, along with a plot with enough zigs and zags to keep one turning the pages.

Jung by Deirdre Bair (Little, Brown, $35). Brilliant, insightful, the Swiss pioneer of psychoanalysis had, in his time, something of the status of a rock star. I was once a trustee of the C.G. Jung Foundation and I wish we had had this 2002 volume. Of the biographies of the iconic Jung, it’s simply the best done.

The Duel

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