Epilogue: A Meditation on Twentieth-Century Economics

Bruce Caldwell

in Hayek's Challenge

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print November 2003 | ISBN: 9780226091914
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226091921 | DOI:
Epilogue: A Meditation on Twentieth-Century Economics

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This epilogue uses the lessons learned about Hayek, about the puzzles he wrestled with and offered solutions to, about the ideas he developed and those he opposed, to argue for a number of theses. First, Hayek's major message was one of the limits that we face as analysts of social phenomena. Second, although there has been much progress of a variety of sorts, the history of economics in the twentieth century lends support to Hayek's views about the empirical limits of the discipline. Third, things are more complicated when it comes to developments in theory. Fourth, a dominant subtext of this concluding chapter is that the effects of positivist or scientific thought on the profession have been nearly entirely negative.

Keywords: Friedrich A. Hayek; economics; positivism; scientific thought

Chapter.  14614 words. 

Subjects: Economic History

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