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Neoclassical theory suggests that poverty is the reflection of low initial endowments of human and nonhuman capital. The theory cannot account for persistent and extreme poverty coupled with high incidence of drug and alcohol abuse, out-of-wedlock births, single-headed households, high welfare dependency, and crime.
This book is designed to provide materials for faculty and students who want to explore the basic intellectual history of modern economics and its turn away from rigid rationality assumptions by including material that would be useful in courses and seminars taught in economics departments at all levels, law school courses and seminars. It looks beyond neoclassical theory to provide the following alternatives:
An introduction to the major challenges to the neoclassical model from scholars who share a faith in market ordering with overviews of the perspectives of behavioral economics, informational economics, institutional economics, and social norms. An introduction to the major criticisms of neoclassical economics from scholars who reject the model of the market for distributing the basic necessities of life with overviews of the perspectives of humanism; feminist critiques of market theory; racial critiques of market theory; empirical evidence of persistent racial discrimination in major markets; and market socialism.