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Does Economics Need an Infusion of Religious or Quasi-Religious Formulations? A Symposium Prologue


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  • Daniel B. Klein
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    This piece is a prologue to a symposium, cosponsored by the Acton Institute, that asks its contributors: Does professional economics need enrichment by religious or quasi-religious thinking? Many common criticisms of professional economics propose the incorporation of richer concepts and formulations, ones that can be described as religious or quasi-religious. If such richer concepts are worth incorporating, does that necessarily bring theism or religiosity into the economists’ discourse? The prologue asks whether mainstream economics tends to preclude religious or quasi-religious understandings, whether that is a bad thing, and about the relationship between such understandings and religious faith.

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    Article provided by Econ Journal Watch in its journal Econ Journal Watch.

    Volume (Year): 11 (2014)
    Issue (Month): 2 (May)
    Pages: 97-105

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    Handle: RePEc:ejw:journl:v:11:y:2014:i:2:p:97-105

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    Keywords: Economics; religion; theism; God; faith; duty; benevolence;

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    1. Christoph Basten & Frank Betz, 2013. "Beyond Work Ethic: Religion, Individual, and Political Preferences," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 67-91, August.
    2. Oslington, Paul, 2014. "The Oxford Handbook of Christianity and Economics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, number 9780199729715, October.
    3. Berggren, Niclas & Bjørnskov, Christian, 2013. "Does religiosity promote property rights and the rule of law?," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 9(02), pages 161-185, June.
    4. Robin Klay, 2014. "Where Do Economists of Faith Hang Out? Their Journals and Associations, plus Luminaries Among Them," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 11(2), pages 106-119, May.
    5. Klein, Daniel B., 2014. "Knowledge and Coordination: A Liberal Interpretation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, number 9780199355327, October.
    6. George J. Stigler, 1971. "Smith's Travels on the Ship of State," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, Duke University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 265-277, Fall.
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    Cited by:
    1. Mary Hirschfeld, 2014. "On the Relationship Between Finite and Infinite Goods, Or: How to Avoid Flattening," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 11(2), pages 179-185, May.
    2. Andrew P. Morriss, 2014. "On the Usefulness of a Flat Economics to the World of Faith," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 11(2), pages 194-201, May.
    3. Abbas Mirakhor, 2014. "The Starry Heavens Above and the Moral Law Within: On the Flatness of Economics," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 11(2), pages 186-193, May.


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