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Capital in the twenty first century is a 2013 book by french economist thomas pikettyit focuses on wealth and income inequality in europe and the united states since the 18th century it was initially published in french as le capital au xxie sicle in august 2013 an english translation by arthur goldhammer followed in april 2014 the books central thesis is that when the rate of return . It seems safe to say that capital in the twenty first century the magnum opus of the french economist thomas piketty will be the most important economics book of the year and maybe of the decadepiketty arguably the worlds leading expert on income and wealth inequality does more than document the growing concentration of income in the hands of a small economic elite. Thomas pikettys capital in the 21st century is arguably the most important popular economics book in recent memory it will take its place among other classics in the field that have survived changing theoretical and political fashions such as its namesake by karl marx das kapital 1867 or other ambitiously titled books such as john maynard keyness the general theory of employment . Capital in the twenty first century by thomas piketty 2014 the belknap press of harvard university press edition in english