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Critical realism and the Austrian paradox

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  • Adam Martin

Abstract

Austrian economics provokes mixed reactions among critical realists. It preaches methodological individualism, marginalism, and rational choice while embracing emergence, open processes, and error. The Austrian school stands paradoxically with one foot each in the mainstream marginalist tradition and heterodox social theory. I argue that this paradox can be disentangled by appeal to the fundamental distinction between the logic of choice and the logic of action. I then extend the analysis of the logic of action to the critical realist account of the basic ontology of social structures, arguing that successful retroduction of social structures depends on marginalist insights. Copyright The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Cambridge Political Economy Society. All rights reserved., Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Cambridge Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 33 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 517-530

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Handle: RePEc:oup:cambje:v:33:y:2009:i:3:p:517-530

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Cited by:
  1. Lukáš Kovanda, 2010. "Critical Realism as an Ontological Basis of Post-Keynesianism," Politická ekonomie, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2010(5), pages 608-622.
  2. Martin, Adam, 2012. "Discovering rhetoric: The ecology of enterprise in the Bourgeois Era," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 757-762.
  3. Adam Martin, 2014. "Where are the big bills? Escaping the endogenizer’s dilemma," The Review of Austrian Economics, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 81-95, March.

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