[OPE-L:7507] Re: Re: textbook for "History of Economic Thought" course?

From: Riccardo Bellofiore (bellofio@cisi.unito.it)
Date: Mon Aug 12 2002 - 09:54:28 EDT

I would add to this very good selection by Rakesh:

Claudio Napoleoni, Smith, Ricardo, Marx, Blackwell 1975

idem, Economic Thought of the XXth Century, Martin Robertson 1972(?)

but even Roll (especially 1st edition) or Blaug, here and there, are very good.

However, most of these are out of print (as, I fear, Heimann, Anikin, 
Routh, Rubin), or outdated, or too difficult or too unilateral.

I think that what matters most are the audience and the aim.

What I would like to do, and I've actually done some times in 
courses, is to use very 'special' history of economic thought books, 
the ones by Marx, Boehm Bawerk, Schumpeter.

So, if one does the Classicals, it would be interesting to compare, 
say, Marx on Smith and Ricardo in TSV, on one side, and Sraffa's 
Introduction on the other. If one does Marx, compare Boehm Bawerk's 
criticism and some excerpts from Rubin's Essays, etc.

But this of course requires some prior knowledge both of the authors 
and the critics. And a lot of work by the teacher.

A couple of very good books have been published in French recently.

A very short and simple introduction by Backhouse has just been 
printed by Penguin.



At 9:35 -0700 10-08-2002, Rakesh Bhandari wrote:
>For a non economist like me, these texts  have proven helpful, 
>though a few may not be in print:
>Ingrid Rima Development of Economic Analysis (the text used by 
>Michael Reich at UC Berkeley--the excellent chapters on Ricardo, 
>Marx and Keynes were helpful to me),
>OPE-L member Ernesto Screpanti and ZamaGni An Outline of the History 
>of Economic Thought (due to its complexity, technical proficiency 
>and utter comprehensiveness perhaps best as a teacher's resource or 
>graduate student text),
>A K Dasgupta Epochs of Economic Theory (succinct, valuable formulations),
>Maurice Dobb Theories of Value and Distribution since Adam Smith 
>(very helpful summary of Ricardo's critique of adding up theories of 
>Phyllis Deane Evolution of Economic Ideas; The State and the 
>Economic System (both very valuable and engagingly written),
>I.I. Rubin's A History of Economic Thought (still the best 
>introduction in the living historical context of socio economic 
>change, but breaks off before marginalism),
>Eduard HeimanN, History of Economic Doctrines (a profound analysis 
>of economic thought in terms of underlying metaphors while still 
>technically proficient, a great book well ahead of its time)
>Guy Routh The Origins of Economic Ideas (delightfully written 
>especially the critique of marginalism; students would really enjoy 
>this book as Routh puts ideas in the context of the bubbling social 
>cauldron from which they emerged),
>A Anikin A Science In Its Youth: Pre-Marxian Political Economy (very 
>student friendly; shouldn't be underestimated due its deliberately 
>amateurish style)
>Mark Skousen The Making of Modern Economics (deliciously Austrian; 
>he has great fun poking at Keynes--go for the rightwinger and teach 
>against it! Skousen can flat out write a popular exposition).
>>Does anyone have a recommendation for a textbook for a history of economic
>>thought course?  I think I'd prefer extracts from relevant authors (as in
>>the old "Masterworks of Economics" which is out of print, as is all others
>>I know of).  I'd be interested in other suggestions also.  I may have to
>>use web resources but I don't think that is as effective with students.
>>Thanks, Paul
>>Paul Zarembka, editor, RESEARCH IN POLITICAL ECONOMY at
>>********************* http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PZarembka


Riccardo Bellofiore
Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche
Via dei Caniana 2
I-24127 Bergamo, Italy
e-mail:   bellofio@unibg.it, bellofio@cisi.unito.it
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