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On modesty and combativeness in economic philosophy

Egidius Berns ()

Cahiers d’économie politique / Papers in Political Economy, 2013, issue 65, 227-239

Abstract: In this contribution I question the expression “economical philosophy” as an association of opposed terms which cannot be defined without referring to each other beforehand. Because of this original intertwining of philosophy and economics, philosophical reason is as bounded as economical reason and therefore unable to determine the place of the economy within the social totality. Therefore, the expression can only be understood as a double bind of modesty and combativeness. Modesty because the philosopher is unable to provide a foundation for the work of the economist, who is henceforth in charge to look for his own foundations. Combativeness because the work of the economist is always already contaminated by claims about the social totality and therefore subject for philosophical critique. In order to express this double bind, it is better to use the expressions “philosophy and economics” or “philosophy of economics”.

Keywords: economic philosophy; practical reason; rationality; chrematistic. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A12 B00 B41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cpo:journl:y:2013:i:65:p:227-239