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Title:Economic history or history of economics? A review essay on Sylvia Nasar's Grand Pursuit: The story of economic genius PDF Logo
Authors:Ashenfelter, Orley
Issue Date:2011
Series/Report no.:Discussion Paper series, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit 6213
Abstract:In this essay I review Sylvia Nasar's long awaited new history of economics, Grand Pursuit. I describe how the book is an economic history of the period from 1850-1950, with distinguished economists' stories inserted in appropriate places. Nasar's goal is to show how economists work, but also to show that they are people too - with more than enough warts and foibles to show they are human! I contrast the general view of the role of economics in Grand Pursuit with Robert Heilbroner's remarkably different conception in The Worldly Philosophers. I also discuss more generally the question of why economists might be interested in their history at all.
Subjects:economic history
economic growth
economic policy
JEL:B10
B30
Persistent Identifier of the first edition:urn:nbn:de:101:1-201201113734
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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