Deductive Irrationality: A Commonsense Critique of Economic Rationalism

Deductive Irrationality: A Commonsense Critique of Economic Rationalism

by David Kehl
     
 

ISBN-10: 073911624X

ISBN-13: 9780739116241

Pub. Date: 05/16/2008

Publisher: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc

Deductive Irrationality examines and critiques economic rationalism from the perspective of political philosophy. The essays in this collection analyze not only the work of founders of the discipline of economics, but also political philosophers influential in this founding and select contributors of seminal theories in modern economic thought_namely, Thomas Hobbes

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Overview

Deductive Irrationality examines and critiques economic rationalism from the perspective of political philosophy. The essays in this collection analyze not only the work of founders of the discipline of economics, but also political philosophers influential in this founding and select contributors of seminal theories in modern economic thought_namely, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Adam Smith, Alfred Marshall, John Maynard Keynes, Friedrich Hayek, Gunnar Myrdal, Robert E. Lucas Jr., and John F. Muth. The main theme linking all of the essays together is that economics is a product of modern rationalism and shares with that rationalism the belief that the only real knowledge is scientific knowledge. Derived from a scientific method modeled on mathematics, this method gives both modern political science and modern economics their abstract character. Adam Smith's contribution to Western thought was more than mere economics; his innovations and his variance from previous thinkers follows Machiavelli in finding human nature in the realistic conception of examining men as how they are, rather than the classical view that we should look to the idea of man's formal excellence. To Smith, humanity emerges from a desire for self-preservation, where every worker competes to exchange the fruits of their labor with that of others. The result is a gap between the world of 'common sense' and the world of theory that practitioners in both fields no longer truly understand. By adopting the perspective of political philosophy, the contributors take an approach that is alien to most economists, and in doing so address many of the currents and tensions that underlie modern economic theory and, by implication, the rational choice theory in political science.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780739116241
Publisher:
The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
Publication date:
05/16/2008
Pages:
292
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.81(d)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Table of Contents Chapter 2 1 Introduction Chapter 3 2 John Locke, Thomas Hobbes, and the Development of Political Economy Chapter 4 3 Adam Smith and the Invention of Economic Science Chapter 5 4 Ethical and Methodological Foundations of Marshall's Economics Chapter 6 5 Keynes's Return to Reality: The General Theory of Employment Chapter 7 6 Rational Expectations Economics as the New Classical Economics Chapter 8 7 Friedrich A. Hayek's Economic Theory of Law Chapter 9 8 The Theory of Economic Development as Presented by Gunnar Myrdal Chapter 10 Notes Chapter 11 Appendix Chapter 12 Bibliography Chapter 13 Index

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