Thorstein veblen thorstein veblen american economist and social scientist who sought to apply an evolutionary dynamic approach to the study of economic institutions with the theory of the leisure class 1899 he won fame in literary circles and in describing the life of the wealthy he coined. The theory of the leisure class an economic study of institutions 1899 by thorstein veblen is a treatise on economics and a detailed social critique of conspicuous consumption as a function of social class and of consumerism derived from the social stratification of people and the division of labour which are the social institutions of the feudal period 9th 15th centuries that . Thorstein veblen laid the foundation for the perspective of institutional economics with his criticism of traditional static economic theory as much as veblen was an economist he was also a sociologist who rejected his contemporaries who looked at the economy as an autonomous stable and static entity
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