This wide-ranging set of papers deals with crucial questions in economic theory, economic policy and economic history. The papers help explain why economic performance deteriorated dramatically in the West over the past three decades as the "Golden Age" of capitalism after World War II was replaced by global neoliberal capitalism. They show that theoretical frameworks rooted in the radical and heterodox traditions can explain this evolution and the current global economic and financial crisis, something mainstream theories cannot do.
Topics include but are not limited to:
- methodology: a critique of "positivism" is used to explain why mainstream reliance on fairy-tale assumptions should be replaced by realistic assumption sets as argued by Marx and Keynes
- Marx, Keynes and Minsky on financial market instability versus mainstream theories of "efficient" financial markets
- how Keynes's assumption that the future is unknowable revolutionized not only macro theory but the micro theory of agent choice as well
- structural causes of the current global financial crisis
- how innovative theories of competition, globalization, capital investment and financialization inspired by Marx, Keynes and Schumpeter can be used to explain the crisis tendencies of neoliberal capitalism
- the influence of class conflict on economic policy, including in the current "austerity" regimes.
The papers in this book should be of interest to most economists and can be used in both graduate and upper level undergraduate courses. Many of these papers are accessible to anyone who reads the business press.
'Crotty's book provides solid theoretical foundations to understanding key economic topics such as growth, distribution, and instability from a heterodox perspective. The reader will have a new opportunity to rethink macroeconomic policies not only based on short-term operational targets but mainly as long-term systemic needs. For these reasons, this book is a valuable academic source for understanding the functioning of complex, path-dependent, crisis-prone capitalist economies.'
– Juan Matías De Lucchi, Review of Keynesian Economics
'This is a marvellous collection of essays of Jim Crotty. They are a joy to read, and provide contributions a plenty for analysing and understanding the evolution of capitalism through globalization and financialization, and developing theories alternative to the mainstream based on realistic assumptions.'
– Malcolm Sawyer, University of Leeds, UK
'No one has written with greater clarity and insight about economic theory and capitalist dynamics in the past three decades than James Crotty. This collection, assembling his best papers in one place, is a must-have for established and aspirational political economists alike. There is wisdom on every page.'
– Gary Dymski, Leeds University Business School, UK
'At a time when mainstream economics is being questioned across the world for its lack of relevance and inability to explain observed reality, James Crotty's work comes as a welcome reminder of how economics can be both relevant and insightful. This body of work spanning more than four decades is still fresh and topical, and essential reading for anyone who wants to understand contemporary capitalism.'
– Jayati Ghosh, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India
, Emeritus Professor of Economics and Sheridan Scholar, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, US.