Science, Economics, 'Vision'

Social Research, Vol. 71, No. 2, pp. 223-234, 2004

13 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2007 Last revised: 30 Jul 2008

See all articles by Susan Haack

Susan Haack

University of Miami - School of Law; University of Miami - Department of Philosophy

Abstract

The focus here is Robert L. Heilbroner's critique, in the last chapter of the 7th edition of The Worldly Philosophers, of the idea that economics is, or should be, scientific. Heilbroner's conception of economics as essentially tied to capitalism is too narrow, and at odds with his own commentary on the rise of pauperism after the English common-land enclosures; and his critique of contemporary economics-as-social science is overdrawn. Nevertheless, there is indeed an important role for the "visionary" economics for which Heilbroner hankers: assessing the benefits and drawbacks of different ways of ordering the production and distribution of goods and services.

Keywords: science, social science, economics, capitalism, Robert L. Heilbroner

Suggested Citation

Haack, Susan, Science, Economics, 'Vision'. Social Research, Vol. 71, No. 2, pp. 223-234, 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=999401

Susan Haack (Contact Author)

University of Miami - School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 248087
Coral Gables, FL 33146
United States
305-284-3541 (Phone)
305-284-6506 (Fax)

University of Miami - Department of Philosophy ( email )

P.O. Box 248054
Coral Gables, FL 33124-4670
United States

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