Rationality and Humanity: A View from Feminist Economics
Global Development and Environment Institute Working Paper No. 05-04
26 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2006
Date Written: May 2005
Does Rational Choice Theory (RCT) have something important to contribute to the humanities? Jon Elster and others answer affirmatively, arguing that RCT is a powerful tool that will lend clarity and rigor to work in the humanities just as it (presumably) has in economics. This essay examines the disciplinary values according to which the application of RCT in economics has been judged a "success," and suggests that this value system does not deserve general approbation. Richness and realism must be retained as important values alongside precision and elegance, if anti-scientific dogmatism and absurd conclusions are to be avoided.
Keywords: rationality, economics, feminism, methodology, values, emotions
JEL Classification: A12, A11, A13
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation