In This Review

Economic Statecraft
Economic Statecraft
By David A. Baldwin
Princeton University Press, 1985, 409 pp

This is a study of economics as an instrument of politics, and quite a rigorous one. It begins with meticulous discussions of the means and ends of national policy and power, and the larger part of the book focuses on economic sanctions. Here Professor Baldwin tears apart the reasoning of most other scholars and torpedoes not only the conventional wisdom about various cases but just about all generalizations. His emphasis on the unique circumstances in which each decision has to be made produces something less than a complete guide to foreign economic policy, but he reminds us that Jefferson said "Ignorance is preferable to error." This is a stimulating book; one wishes it covered the whole range of foreign economic policy.