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Gilles Dostaler, Keynes and His Battles. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, This book sets out to be a study of Keynes militant, neither a full biography nor a study of his thought alone, let alone merely his economics.
Gilles Dostaler Professor of Economics at Universit? Montreal argues that the? He is in no doubt that the study of this extraordinary man has continuing relevance, not only to the historian, but for our own times. The book addresses Keynes?
Ethics is the theme of Chapter 2, which includes by way of? Dostaler sees Keynes in revolt against the Victorian morality of his childhood, under the influence of the liberal moralists Bentham, J. Mill and Sidgwick who sought to establish a morality without religion, seizing upon the philosophy of G. Moore as a religion without morality, and finally in his mature years coming to recognize the power of tradition and convention in the maintenance of civilization against the forces of unreason.
Continuing the philosophical theme, Chapter 3 reviews Keynes? Chapter 4 moves from ethics to Keynes? The chapter closes with a second historical interlude to provide the context for Keynes? Chapter 5 considers Keynes? The chapter ends by recording the extent to which history bore out Keynes? Chapters 6 through 8 turn to Keynes?
Chapter 6 identifies the central importance of money in Keynes? The progression of Keynes? Chapter 7 considers his related efforts to articulate a theory of employment based on effective demand rather than the cost of labor.
The genesis of The General Theory is depicted as a rationalization of long-held intuitions and of policies that were not by any means uniquely Keynes? Chapter 8 links money and employment by recounting Keynes? Chapter 9 reviews some of Keynes? Dostaler conveys well Keynes? Chapter 10 draws together this portrait of Keynes as a figure of immense stature, greatly respected but only partly understood by friend and foe alike, often wrongly given both credit and blame for the course of subsequent economic history, passionately committed to bringing about a better world by?
There are some textual slips e. The translation by Niall B. Mann is of high quality and I was seldom conscious that the original was written in French, despite one or two awkward phrases, although some chapters are more fluent than others.
A particular feature is the interweaving of historical events and theoretical development. The bibliography and notes are comprehensive and erudite, and the timetable useful. It is not clear to me that Bloomsbury entirely fits Dostaler? To say as much does not detract from its influence on Keynes? Yet as a field of public campaign for sexual liberation, etc? I am not convinced. The General Theory is my particular field of interest and I question one or two of Dostaler?
Nevertheless, he wisely sets out to avoid detailed theoretical controversy p. It is unfortunate that he seems to support the idea that The General Theory is merely a literary work, as opposed to a scholarly treatise pp. In my opinion, Dostaler underestimates the continuity between the thought of Marshall and Keynes, both in style and substance. Compared with Skidelsky? The result is a satisfying and highly readable book, especially for non-economists and non-British readers approaching Keynes from a wider perspective, and compares favorably with Hession , whose less successful unifying thesis was the relationship between Keynes?
I do not detect much new primary material? Robert Skidelsky, London: Pan Macmillan. Please read our Copyright Information page for important copyright information. Send email to admin eh. Newsletters To join the newsletters or submit a posting go to click here. Published by EH. Reviewed for EH. NET by M. Hayes, Homerton College, University of Cambridge.
References: Gilles Dostaler, Keynes et ses combats , Paris: Albin Michel. Charles H. Hession, John Maynard Keynes. New York and London: Macmillan.
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Gilles Dostaler, Le Libéralisme de Hayek, Collection "Repères", 2001