Date: Thu Jan 13 2005 - 11:21:43 EST
Among other things, Bob Heilbroner was an integral part of the political econonmy program at the New School who encouraged the study of the history of thought and methodology. He wasn't a Marxist, but he was an intellectual in the finest sense of the word and an excellent teacher and mentor with a fine -- but dry -- sense of humor. I think that virtually everyone who passed through the Economics Dept. at the New School was influenced by him one way or another. In solidarity, Jerry NEW SCHOOL UNIVERSITY MOURNS THE PASSING OF ROBERT HEILBRONER New School University mourns the passing of Robert Heilbroner, Norman Thomas Professor Emeritus at the Graduate Faculty, who died on January 4, 2005 at the age of 85. Author of 25 books and countless articles, Heilbroner was an outstanding public intellectual of the 20th century. His classic treatment of the history of economic thought, The Worldly Philosophers: The Life and Time of the Great Economists, captivated generations of readers with its elegantly written, witty, and probing discussions of how economists from Smith to Keynes struggled to understand the history of capitalism. Heilbroner's regular contributions on economic issues in The New Yorker and The New York Review of Books reached readers across the public spectrum. His insistence that economic issues are integrally tied to moral and psychological concerns gave his work a rare depth and spoke to the political nature of all social thought. Professor Heilbroner's intellectual home was the New School, where he spent his entire career. His 50-year affiliation with the Graduate Faculty helped make the New School a center of intellectual life in New York City. First published in 1953, The Worldly Philosophers has been translated into 22 languages and remains one of the best selling books in economics of all time. Heilbroner's subsequent books addressed issues as varied as the danger of excessive corporate power (The Limits of American Capitalism), the adaptability of capitalist and socialist societies to radical social and ecological challenges (An Inquiry in the Human Prospect), the future of capitalism (Twenty-First Century Capitalism), the limits of mathematical modelling as applied to economics (Behind the Veil of Economics, The Crisis of Vision in Modern Economic Thought, with William Milberg), the merits of Marxian economics (Marxism: For and Against), and the importance of deficit spending for economic growth (The Debt and the Deficit, with Peter Bernstein). His academic essays focused mainly on the relevance of the work of Schumpeter and Smith for understanding contemporary issues. At the New School, Heilbroner taught the history of economic thought to generations of graduate students and spoke often at public events at the University and to business and labor groups around New York City. He lectured at roughly 100 campuses around the world. In the 1970s, he was one of the architects of the political economy program in the Economics Department, which emphasized classical economics, economic history and institutionalist approaches to economic theory. He also served as a member of the Editorial Board of Social Research, an interdisciplinary journal based at the University. Robert Heilbroner was born on March 24, 1919, attended Horace Mann School for Boys and graduated summa cum laude from Harvard University in 1940. He worked briefly for the Office of Price Administration in Washington, D.C. before serving in the Army on the Pacific front in World War II. After the War, he came back to New York, and worked as a freelance writer while he studied at the New School. After he joined the Economics faculty at the New School, he was granted a doctorate in economics from the New School for his book, The Making of Economic Society. He served on the executive committee of the American Economic Association and as a Vice President of that association. He was the first recipient of the "Scholar of the Year" award by the New York Council of the Humanities and also received the Veblen-Commons Award for the Association of Evolutionary Economics. The New School has lost one of its leading lights and a man whose integrity and love of intellectual debate burned brightly at the center of the Graduate Faculty in the second half of the twentieth century. We extend our sincere condolences to the Heilbroner family. A memorial service for Robert Heilbroner will be held at New School University on Saturday, January 29, 2005. Details will be announced shortly.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Sun Jan 16 2005 - 00:00:01 EST