Capitalism and Freedom Summary

The SQUEEZE: Milton Friedman’s book, Capitalism and Freedom, discusses how economic capitalism plays a major part in a liberal society. In the book, Friedman argues for economic freedom and believes it should be a prerequisite to political freedom. The term “liberal” is defined within the context of European Enlightenment in contrast to American usage. Friedman believes that a free market has a place within philosophical and practical contexts, advocating the end of mandatory licensing for medical professionals (i.e., doctors) and the establishing of vouchers for school education. Friedman further discusses the relationship between two types of freedoms; the role of government; the control of money; and financial and trade agreements. Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom is a must-read for economic students wanting to enter the industry.

Notable Endorsement: “Milton Friedman is one of the nation's outstanding economists, distinguished for remarkable analytical powers and technical virtuosity. He is unfailingly enlightening, independent, courageous, penetrating, and above all, stimulating.” - Henry Hazlitt, Newsweek

Common Q’s Answered by this Book:

  • What is the relationship between economic freedom and political freedom?
  • What is the role of government in a free society?
  • What are international and trade arrangements?
  • What is the role of government in education?
  • What is occupational licensure?
  • What are examples of social welfare measures?
  • What is one method for alleviating poverty?


About the Author:  An American economist and statistician, Milton Friedman has taught at the University of Chicago for three decades. Friedman is a recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. He is primarily renowned for his work on monetary history and theory; consumption analysis; and the complexity of stabilization policy. As an economic adviser to President Ronald Reagan, Friedman has influenced policy research agendas; and his political philosophy supports the free market economic system. Friedman is the founder of The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. Friedman graduated with a degree from Rutgers University. For more information, visit: and


Book Vitals:

Publisher: University of Chicago Press (November 2002)

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