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Author: Michael R. Lynn

This book explores the appropriation of science in French society and the development of an urban scientific culture. Science underwent a process of commodification and popularization during the eighteenth century as more and more individuals sought to acquire some knowledge of scientific activities and as more and more people entered public debates on science. Popular science took many forms in the eighteenth century. While books, periodicals, universities, and academies all provided a breadth of scientific popularization at different levels and for different audiences, this book focuses on popular science within urban culture more generally. More than ever before, public lectures and demonstrations, clubs, and other activities arose in the eighteenth century as new opportunities for the general population to gain access to and appropriate science. These arenas for popular science were not restricted to people of a certain education. In fact, popular science, and public lecture courses in particular, was often set at a level that could be understood by pretty much anyone. This was a bone of contention between popularizers and their critics who felt that in some cases popular science lacked any sort of real scientific content. In reality, some popularizers had specific theoretical content in mind for their courses while others were admittedly more interested in theatrics. Identifying the audience, cost, and location of popular science helps reveal its place in urban culture. The book looks at the audience, identified through advertisements and course descriptions, as well as the economics of courses.

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Kamal Ramburuth-Hurt

In this chapter, we argue that it is necessary to reclaim economics as everyday democracy and we set out steps to achieve this goal. The aim is to build the democratic institutions, skills and practices that are necessary to enable everyone to participate in decisions about how the economy they live in is organised. This must be accompanied by

in Reclaiming economics for future generations
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Now we turn to consider the economic history of our world to understand better how today’s structural inequality came to be. In the last chapter , we argued that the theoretical foundations of neoclassical economics are unsuitable for addressing structural inequality because they analyse the interaction of individuals in an ahistorical vacuum

in Reclaiming economics for future generations
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Bill Dunn

Introduction Keynes was intensely political. He was an activist, a populariser of economic ideas, an influential Treasury official, and seldom for long out of touch with the prime minister of the day. Fitzgibbons argues that he ‘developed his political theories long before his economics, and the principles of his economics reflected his politics rather than the other way around’ ( 1988 : 54–5). It is probably not a simple either/or but for Keynes, economics was never a neutral scientific endeavour, and it makes sense to understand his economics in the light

in Keynes and Marx
Bill Dunn

Introduction Keynesian scholarship is enormous and diverse. It is impossible to know, much less to present, this contradictory richness in a single chapter. Rather than feigning an overview of the literature, the chapter sketches three broad trajectories to make an argument that each of these strands of the Keynesian critique remain limited by an ambiguous and unsatisfactory break with neo-classical economics. The problem can perhaps be couched in terms of the analogy with physics mentioned in the Introduction. Keynes saw his theory as general in the same

in Keynes and Marx
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Bill Dunn

Introduction This chapter and the next discuss Keynes’s philosophy and politics, particularly with a view to how they influence his economics. The division of these chapters is somewhat arbitrary, and some of the material inevitably leaks between them. Broadly, however, this chapter introduces Keynes’s philosophy, the next his politics, including his views of the state and the inter-state system. Probably more than any major economist since Marx, Keynes thought deeply about political and philosophical issues. He was a sophisticated thinker, close

in Keynes and Marx
Jack Mosse

. Confusion and the pot of money myth Along with anger, there was also a sense of confusion among the people I spoke to about how the economy works. However, it would be unfair to think that it was just the people on this estate who struggle with the basics of how our economy functions. Indeed, I was first confronted with my own terrible lack of knowledge on the economy when the global markets crashed in 2008. Compared to most people I ought to have been well equipped: I have an A-level in economics, took

in The pound and the fury
Bill Dunn

and the rise of an apparently viable socialist alternative became widely attractive, not least to many of Keynes’s Cambridge contemporaries, and contrasted with the rise of fascism and nationalism, which culminated in a Second World War even more destructive than the First. A liberal economics based on enlightened self-interest in which, by assumption, neither states nor unemployment existed made sense neither as theory nor ideology, and Keynes became the most prominent of many economists trying to articulate a more realistic theory, a theory which would better

in Keynes and Marx
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Towards a critical but constructive appraisal of Keynes’s thought
Bill Dunn

at least some analytical priority to questions of social relations of production, in particular to these social relations of production over individuals’ perceptions. Keynes’s epistemology is not always clear or consistent but, as will be argued below, he often broadly articulates an idealist individualism, which severely limits his break with the mainstream. If Keynes’s economics involved some reconnection between theory and the real world, with which the marginalist mainstream had appeared to lose all contact, his ideas can reasonably be characterised as an

in Keynes and Marx

fundamentally unsustainable. Overall production and consumption levels and the waste by-products from this are causing devastating global heating, biodiversity loss, ocean acidification and increased extreme weather events. Academic neoclassical economics is fundamentally unable to grapple with this crisis because it fails to recognise that infinite growth of economic activity on a finite

in Reclaiming economics for future generations