April 28, 2013

AT THE eND OF hISTORY, ALL THAT'S LEFT IS ORTHODOXY:

Inside the offbeat economics department that debunked Reinhart-Rogoff (Dylan Matthews, April 24, 2013 Washington Post)

With the end of the Cold War, however, the Marxian element started to subside. The radicals started to get less radical, and the newcomers weren't very radical at all. "I think a number of my colleagues on the left end of the department were taken with the idea that the great twentieth century battle between capitalism and socialism had ended. Capitalism had won and socialism had lost." Wolff remembers. "So that project struck them as suddenly out of date or even anachronistic. It wasn't relevant anymore."

"The younger economists were much more empirically oriented, a bit more policy oriented," Epstein says. "We're a much more diverse group now." [...]

"There was now, in a sense, two economics departments. There's the regular one and PERI," Wolff says. "You might want to call them left Keynesians, but the Keynesianism is the theoretical frame. Marxism, for sure, is not." Pollin insists he'd be more than happy to hire Marxists; it's just that economics departments don't churn them out anymore.

To be sure, some of the economists in the department today wouldn't be out of place working as applied macroeconomists anywhere else. But they still tend to focus on issues that other departments neglect.

Posted by at April 28, 2013 9:09 AM
  

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