It could have been given for an important occasion or just for no reason at all.
Tell us about the present and why it was memorable.
Because of ignorance and bad planning, a new, multimillion-dollar industrial plant was suddenly without the raw material it needed to function.
But what impressed Hirschman was the response to the crisis.
the mid-nineteenth century, work began on a crucial section of the railway line connecting Boston to the Hudson River.
The addition would run from Greenfield, Massachusetts, to Troy, New York, and it required tunnelling through Hoosac Mountain, a massive impediment, nearly five miles thick, that blocked passage between the Deerfield Valley and a tributary of the Hudson. is believed to be the only barrier between Boston and the Pacific,” the project’s promoter, Alvah Crocker, declared. Digging through the Hoosac turned out to be a nightmare.
They found other kinds of lumber that worked just as well.
The result was that the plant was blessed with a far more diversified base of raw materials than had ever been imagined.
As was nearly always the case with Hirschman’s writing, he made his argument without mathematical formulas or complex models.
His subject was economics, but his spirit was literary.