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The Fire of Invention

Civil Society and the Future of the Corporation

Michael Novak

Paperback
A must-read book for every CEO-Robert C. Goizueta, CEO, The Coca-Cola Company A brilliant, succinct analysis of the American corporation today. Novak convincingly portrays this much-reviled institution as an unparalleled creator of wealth, mobilizing people and capital to perform innovative, complex tasks, its very independence from government making it a vital bulwark for democracy and liberty.—Forbes « less more »
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 192Size: 4 x 7 1/2
978-0-8476-8665-0 • Paperback • January 1999 • $17.00 • (£10.95)
Chapter 1 Introduction: A Spirit Born from the Sea
Part 2 Part One: The Future of the Corporation
Chapter 3 What Is a Corporation?
Chapter 4 The Corporation and Civil Society
Chapter 5 The Stakeholder Society
Chapter 6 The end of the Republican Experiment?
Part 7 Part Two: The Fire of Invention, the Fuel of Interest
Chapter 8 The Grand Historical Adventure
Chapter 9 From Lincoln to John Paul II
Chapter 10 Some Clarifications
Chapter 11 Five Disputed Questions
Chapter 12 But Isn't Genetics Different?
Chapter 13 Does a Patent Regime Protect Private Interests or Public Good?
Chapter 14 Conclusion
Part 15 Part Three: On Corporate Governance
Chapter 16 What Is the Business Corporation?
Chapter 17 Executive Energy
Chapter 18 The Ant and the Elephant
Chapter 19 Why Do Firms Exist?
Chapter 20 Pirates!
Chapter 21 Mutual Funds and Pension Funds
Chapter 22 Looking for the Right Stuff
Chapter 23 A Well-Lighted Place
Chapter 24 On Envy: "Thou Shalt Not Covet"
Chapter 25 Two Types of Inequality
Chapter 26 Justifying Unequal Compensation
Chapter 27 Against Appeasement
Chapter 28 A Cheerful View at the End of a Sorry Century
Chapter 29 Appendix: The Legend of the Bay Steed
Chapter 30 Notes
Chapter 31 Index
This book must be read by anyone serious about the future of America. Its ideas will change the lives of millions.
Robert L. Dilenschneider, The Dilenschneider Group, Inc.


A profound experience awaits the reader.
Daniel P. Moynihan, United States Senator, DNY


In The Fire of Invention, Michael Novak does what we have come to expect of him: write on matters of capitalism and corporate governance in an eloquent, illuminating and morally serious manner. He understands as few others do the great promise, as well as the limits and temptations, of democratic capitalism.
William J. Bennett, former U.S. Secretary of Education, author of The Book of Virtues


In The Fire of Invention, Michael Novak reminds us that the business corporation is not merely a necessary evil to be tolerated, but an integral part of our democratic order critical to both civic and public life. He forthrightly rejects trendy attempts to recycle socialist ideas from the 'stakeholder society' to strictures against downsizing, while pointing us to the true sources of creativity in the postindustrial world.
Francis Fukuyama, author of The End of History and the Last Man


A must-read book for every CEO.
Roberto C. Goizueta, CEO, The Coca Cola Corporation


This book is a must for every student of freedom, every public policy maker concerned with economic progress, and every business person concerned with the interests of consumers and shareholders alike.
John M. Templeton, M.D., president, John Templeton Foundation


Novak's trenchant observations, well-grounded and well-argued, draw upon his vast knowledge of American history and corporate America, and will be an education for business and political leaders alike.
William E. Simon, president, John M. Olin Foundation, Inc.


Brilliant, succinct analysis of the American corporation today. Novak convincingly portrays its much-reviled institution as an unparalleled creator of wealth, mobilizing people and capital to perform innovative, complex tasks, its very independence from government making it a vital bulwark for democracy and liberty.
Forbes


One of the best introductions to the subject of the morality of the corporation that one can find. Its brevity is an asset, not a liability; it makes The Fire of Invention a perfect gift for that busy corporate executive you know who needs to understand more clearly why what he does is socially beneficial and morally just.
The Freeman


The Fire of Invention is a highly readable book.
Victoria Sizemore Long; Kansas City Star, Dec. 97


The most welcome paperback edition of a book that has been widely and justly lauded for its moral evaluation of the contemporary corporation. It will also challenge and inform those who are uncritically enthusiastic about the corporation.
First Things


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