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Beyond Rhetoric and Realism in Economics: Towards a Reformulation of Methodology (Economics AsSocial Theory)
Publisher: Routledge | ISBN: 041508220X | edition 1995 | PDF | 264 pages | 3,37 mb
Beyond Rhetoric and Realism in Economics provides a clear introduction to some of the major debates taking place within the philosophy of economics. The book analyzes two methodological positions that have undermined the hegemony once enjoyed by positivist philosophies. The first position explored is rhetoric, which attacks imperiously prescriptive methodologies and attempts to expand the economic dialogue, often by introducing work from other disciplines. In contrast, the realists take issue with the relativizing tendencies of the rhetoric school and argue that scientific realism is the more compelling framework for economics.
While exploring both of these positions, Boylan and O'Gormon demonstrate why neither position is a satisfactory resolution to the methodological issues facing economics. In direct opposition to these positions, the authors construct and develop an alternative framework, which they term "causal holism". With its origins in the work of Quine and van Frassen, this position shifts the focus of attention onto the role of economic models, especially their descriptive adequacy and provides a challenging analysis of economic theory, causality and explanation.