The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money was first published in 1936. But its ideas had been forming for decades - as a student at Cambridge, Keynes had written to a friend of his love for 'Free Trade and free thought'. Keynes's limpid style, concise prose, and vivid descriptions have helped to keep his ideas alive - as have the novelty and clarity, at times even the ambiguity, of his macroeconomic vision. He was troubled, above all, by high unemployment rates and large disparities in wealth and income. Only by curbing both, he thought, could individualism, 'the most powerful instrument to better the future', be safeguarded. The twenty-first century may yet prove him right.