Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Joan Robinson's book on economics

In Joan Robinson’s “Introduction to Modern Economics” "Rumplestatskin" recommends the economics text book An Introduction to Modern Economics by Joan Robinson.
For Robinson, rebuilding modern economics teaching meant starting with an understanding of evolving economic doctrines. As such, she begins her revolutionary textbook with a summary of the defining battles within economic philosophy, tracing the key players and their moral and logical arguments since the writings of Fançois Quesnay in the 18th century.
As a recently trained economist one of the more shocking things about Robinson’s textbook is the way many core features of neoclassical economics are brushed away in a sentence or paragraph as mere metaphysical reasoning. She defines such reasoning as being “applied to a use of language that conveys no factual information, describes no logical relations nor gives precise instructions and yet is calculated to affect conduct.”
If you want an introduction to economics that acknowledges the rather limited knowledge generated by the field, and starts from fundamental moral foundations, then you could do worse than tracking down a copy of Robinson and Eatwell’s textbook from your local library’s storage shed.

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