The Rhetoric of Economics / Edition 2

The Rhetoric of Economics / Edition 2

by Deirdre N. McCloskey
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0299158144

ISBN-13: 9780299158149

Pub. Date: 04/28/1998

Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press

A classic in its field, this pathbreaking book humanized the scientific rhetoric of economics to reveal its literary soul. "McCloskey's target is the pretentious scientism in which economists couch their mutual persuasions--a scientism that lingers on as the near-official language of economics discourse long after its inadequacies have been recognized by philosophers

Overview

A classic in its field, this pathbreaking book humanized the scientific rhetoric of economics to reveal its literary soul. "McCloskey's target is the pretentious scientism in which economists couch their mutual persuasions--a scientism that lingers on as the near-official language of economics discourse long after its inadequacies have been recognized by philosophers and scientists".--NEW YORK REVIEW OF BOOKS.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780299158149
Publisher:
University of Wisconsin Press
Publication date:
04/28/1998
Series:
Rhetoric of the Human Sciences Series
Edition description:
2
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Edition xi(4)
Acknowledgments for the First Edition xv(4)
Exordium xix
1 HOW TO DO A RHETORICAL ANALYSIS OF ECONOMICS, AND WHY
3(17)
It's Not Philosophical Reading, It's Rhetorical
3(1)
The Old Word "Rhetoric" Is a Good One
4(3)
The Scientist Must Establish Her "Ethos"
7(2)
Point of View Is a Scientific Choice
9(1)
"Mere" Style Is Not Mere
10(1)
Style Is Often an Appeal to Authority
11(1)
Economists Are Poets
12(1)
And Novelists
13(2)
Be Not Afraid of Deconstruction and Other Terrors
15(2)
Writing Is Performance
17(3)
2 THE LITERARY CHARACTER OF ECONOMIC SCIENCE
20(15)
Science Uses Literary Methods
20(3)
Proofs of the Law of Demand Are Mostly Literary
23(5)
Linguistics Is an Appropriate Model for Economic Science
28(3)
Literary Thinking May Improve Applied Economics
31(4)
3 FIGURES OF ECONOMIC SPEECH
35(17)
Even a Mathematical Economist Uses, and Must Use, Literary Devices: The Case of Paul Samuelson
35(3)
Most of the Devices Are Only Dimly Recognized
38(2)
Models Are Nonornamental Metaphors: The Case of Gary Becker
40(4)
Both Mathematical and Nonmathematical Reasoning in Economics Rely on Metaphor
44(4)
The Master Tropes Rule Economics: The Case of Robert Solow
48(4)
4 THE RHETORIC OF SCIENTISM: HOW JOHN MUTH PERSUADES
52(22)
Muth's Article Was Ill-Written but Important
52(2)
Muth's Main Points Can Be Expressed in English
54(4)
Muth's Article Engages in the Usual Appeals to Scientific Method
58(3)
Muth's Appeal Is in Fact to the Community of Scholars
61(2)
The Explicit Arguments Are Rhetorically Complex
63(3)
Muth's Rhetoric Is Indistinguishable from That in Other Fields
66(8)
5 THE PROBLEM OF AUDIENCE IN HISTORICAL ECONOMICS: ROBERT FOGEL AS RHETOR
74(13)
The Text Was Important
74(3)
It Is a Most Rhetorical Book
77(2)
It Uses Intensively the Common Topics
79(3)
The Book Also Uses the Special Topics of Economics
82(2)
The Text Invested an Audience
84(3)
6 THE LAWYERLY RHETORIC OF COASE'S "THE NATURE OF THE FIRM"
87(13)
Coase Solved His Problem of Ethos by Appeal to Axiom and Proof
87(2)
But Coase Was an Advocate, Not a Prover
89(2)
The Lawyerly Rhetoric Appeals to the Facts
91(3)
And Yet Coase Is Indubitably an Economist
94(1)
His Article Was about the Rhetoric in the Economy
95(3)
Coasean Economics Is Anti-Modernist, "Gothic," Postmodern in Its Rhetoric
98(2)
7 THE UNEXAMINED RHETORIC OF ECONOMIC QUANTIFICATION
100(12)
Rhetorical Standards, for Example, Are Necessary to Measure the Integration of Markets
100(4)
In Like Fashion, Rhetorical Standards Are Necessary in Linguistics to Measure the Similarity of Languages
104(3)
That Is, the Speech Acts of Scientists Are Conversations, Good or Bad
107(2)
The Conversation on Purchasing Power Parity, for Example, Is Rhetorically Muddled
109(3)
8 THE RHETORIC OF SIGNIFICANCE TESTS
112(27)
Statistical Significance Has Ruined Empirical Work in Economics
112(3)
Econometrics Confuses Statistical and Scientific Significance
115(5)
The Rhetorical History of Statistics Is the Source of the Difficulty
120(5)
A Lot Can Go Wrong When Using Statistical Significance
125(4)
A Lot Did Go Wrong
129(10)
9 THE POVERTY OF ECONOMIC MODERNISM
139(17)
The Mathematization of Economics Was a Good Idea
139(1)
But a Philosophy Got Mixed Up in the Mathematics
140(1)
The Official Methodology of Economics Is "Modernist"
141(6)
Modernism Is a Poor Method: For One Thing, It Is Obsolete in Philosophy
147(1)
And Falsification Is Not Cogent
148(2)
Profitable Prediction Is Not Possible In Economics
150(1)
Modernism Is Impossible, and Is Not Adhered To
151(5)
10 FROM METHODOLOGY TO RHETORIC
156(12)
Any Rule-Bound Methodology Is Objectionable
156(3)
Methodology Is Middle Management
159(3)
Good Science Is Good Conversation
162(1)
Rhetoric Is a Better Way to Understand Science
163(1)
Other Sciences Have Rhetorics
164(4)
11 ANTI-ANTI-RHETORIC
168(19)
The Alternative to Modernism Is Not Irrationalism
168(3)
The Political Arguments for Methodology Are Weak
171(4)
We Wish to Make Plausible Statements, Whether "Scientific" or Not
175(4)
The Philosophical Objections to Rhetoric Are Not Persuasive
179(4)
Anti-Modernism Is Nice
183(1)
Rhetoric Is Good for You
184(3)
12 SINCE RHETORIC: PROSPECTS FOR A SCIENTIFIC ECONOMICS
187(8)
Bibliography 195(24)
Index 219

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