Ibn Jaldun o el precursor de les ciències econòmiques


  • Fabià Estapé i Rodríguez


Ahd-ar-Rahnut Ibn Muhammad Ibn Khaldun al-Hadrami of Tunis (1332-1406) was an Arabic genius who achieved a piece of literature which can bear comparison with the work of Thuydides or the work of Machiavelli for both breadth and profundity of vision as well as for sheer intellectual power Ibn Khaldun's star shines the more brightly by contrast with the foil of darkness against which it flashes out; for while Thucydides and Machiavelli and Clarendon are all brilliant representatives of brilliant times and places, Ibn Khaldun is the sole point of light in his quarter of the firmament. He is indeed the one outstanding personality in the history of a civilisation whose social life on the whole was "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short". In his chosen field of' intellectual activity he appears to have been inspired by no predecessors, and to have found no kindled souls among his contemporaries, and to have kindled no answering spark of inspiration in any successors; and yet, in the Prolegomenon to his Universal History he has conceived and formulated a philosophy of' history which is undoubtedly the greatest work of its kind that has ever yet been created by any mind in any time or place (Arnold J. Toynbee, A Study of History, vol. III).