Post-autistic economics

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The post-autistic economics movement (French: autisme-économie)[1] or movement of students for the reform of economics teaching (French: mouvement des étudiants pour une réforme de l'enseignement de l'économie)[2] is a political movement which criticises neoclassical economics and advocates for pluralism in economics. The movement gained attention after an open letter signed by almost a thousand economics students at French universities and Grandes Écoles was published in Le Monde in 2000.[3]

Terminology[edit]

The French term autisme has an older meaning and signifies "abnormal subjectivity, acceptance of fantasy rather than reality". However, post-autistic economists also "assert that neoclassical economics has the characteristics of an autistic child".[4]

The pejorative reference to the neurodevelopmental disorder autism is considered offensive by some economists.[5] Greg Mankiw said that "use of the term indicates a lack of empathy and understanding for those who live with actual, severe autism".[6]

Before autism became widely understood in its modern medical sense, the word autistic was used in Austrian economics. Ludwig von Mises defined autistic exchange as "action [...] performed by an individual without any reference to cooperation with other individuals".[7]

Response[edit]

The French minister of education appointed a panel headed by Jean-Paul Fitoussi to inquire into economics teaching.[8] In 2000, the panel called for limited reform.[9]

Articles associated with the movement were published in the Post-Autistic Economics Newsletter from September 2000. This electronic newsletter became the post-autistic economics review and, since 2008, has existed as the peer-reviewed journal real-world economics review.[10]

Several responses to the French students' open letter were also published in Le Monde. A counter-petition signed by 15 French economists was published in October 2000.[11] Robert Solow adhered to the "main thesis" of the French students' petition, but criticised the "opaque and almost incomprehensible" debate that followed among academics.[12] Olivier Blanchard also published a response defending mainstream economics.[10] Other notable economists, such as Steve Keen and James K. Galbraith, wrote elsewhere in support of the French students.[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Badiou, Alain (15 July 2009). "The post-autistic movement". Adbusters. 
  2. ^ "Le site du mouvement des étudiants pour une réforme de l'enseignement de l'économie" [The site of the movement of students for the reform of economics teaching] (in French). Retrieved 31 December 2016. 
  3. ^ "Lettre ouverte des étudiants en économie" [Open letter from students in economics]. Le Monde (in French). 17 June 2000. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via autisme-economie.org. 
  4. ^ Alcorn, Stanley; Solarz, Ben (1 July 2006). "The Autistic Economist". post-autistic economics review (38). 2. Retrieved 31 December 2016. 
  5. ^ Kay, Neil (7 September 2008). "The Importance of Words" (Letter). Letter to the editors of the post-autistic economics review. 
  6. ^ Mankiw, Greg (3 December 2007). "Autism and Economics". Retrieved 31 December 2016. 
  7. ^ von Mises, Ludwig (1949). "Autistic Exchange and Interpersonal Exchange". Human Action. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via Liberty Fund. 
  8. ^ Monaghan, Peter (24 January 2003). "Taking on rational man: dissident economists fight for a niche in the discipline". The Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via Iowa State University. 
  9. ^ Raveaud, Gilles (2000). "The Fitoussi Report" – via autisme-economie.org. 
  10. ^ a b Edward, Fullbrook. "The post-autistic economics movement: a brief history" (PDF). Journal of Australian Political Economy (50): 14–23. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via Altruists International. 
  11. ^ "Contre-appel pour préserver la scientificité de l'économie" [Counter-appeal to preserve the scientificity of economics]. Le Monde (in French). 31 October 2000. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via autisme-economie.org. 
  12. ^ Solow, Robert (3 January 2001). "L'économie entre empirisme et mathématisation" [Economics between empiricism and mathematization]. Le Monde (in French). Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via autisme-economie.org. 
  13. ^ Galbraith, James K. (January 2001). "A contribution on the state of economics in France and the world". In Fullbrook, Edward. The crisis in economics: the post-autistic economics movement: the first 600 days. p. 47. ISBN 0415308976. Retrieved 31 December 2016 – via Post-Autistic Economics Network. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Fullbrook, Edward, ed. (2007). Real world economics: a post-autistic economics reader. Anthem Press. ISBN 1843312360. 
  • Fullbrook, Edward, ed. (2003). The crisis in economics: the post-autistic economics movement: the first 600 days. Psychology Press. ISBN 0415308976. 

External links[edit]