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Inflation, chômage et la planification des récessions : la Théorie générale de Keynes et après


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  • Lavoie, Marc

    (Département de Science économique, Université d’Ottawa)


The purpose of this paper is to present J.M. Keynes' forgotten theory of prices and inflation which is contained in the General Theory. It is shown that Keynes distinguished between institutional inflationary forces and demand-led inflation. Although Keynes spent more time on trying to tackle the latter problem, it is with the former that he really was concerned. Keynes was fully aware of the upwards instability of prices, in an institutional context where full employment is a guaranteed government policy. Partly because Keynes considered that rising prices were usually not the consequence of some scarcity, he rejected planned recessions as the means to fight inflation. He would thus have objected to the economic policies pursued by present-day governments. But he did not elaborate on any alternative solution. L’objectif de cet article est de sortir de l’ombre la théorie des prix et de l’inflation qui se trouve contenue dans la Théorie générale de Keynes. Il est montré que Keynes faisait une distinction entre les forces inflationnistes institutionnelles et l’inflation par la demande. Même si Keynes a surtout consacré ses efforts à la résorption du second type d’inflation, ce sont les forces inflationnistes institutionnelles qui le préocuppaient vraiment. Keynes était tout à fait conscient de l’instabilité à la hausse des prix, dans un cadre institutionnel où le plein emploi est une politique gouvernementale assurée. En partie parce qu’il croyait que les hausses de prix n’étaient habituellement pas la conséquence d’une forme de rareté, Keynes rejetait les récessions planifiées comme moyen de combattre l’inflation. Il se serait donc opposé aux politiques économiques prônées par les gouvernements actuels. Mais il n’a pas vraiment proposé de solution alternative.

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Article provided by Société Canadienne de Science Economique in its journal L'Actualité économique.

Volume (Year): 61 (1985)
Issue (Month): 2 (juin)
Pages: 171-199

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Handle: RePEc:ris:actuec:v:61:y:1985:i:2:p:171-199

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  1. Modigliani, Franco, 1977. "The Monetarist Controversy or, Should We Forsake Stabilization Policies?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 1-19, March.
  2. Kahn, Richard, 1978. "Some Aspects of the Development of Keynes's Thought," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 16(2), pages 545-59, June.
  3. Friedman, Milton, 1977. "Nobel Lecture: Inflation and Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 451-72, June.
  4. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1981. "Tobin and Monetarism: A Review Article," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 558-67, June.
  5. John Addison & John Burton, 1984. "The sociopolitical analysis of inflation," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 120(1), pages 90-120, March.
  6. Hahn, F H, 1980. "Monetarism and Economic Theory," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 47(185), pages 1-17, February.
  7. Hicks, John R [Sir], 1976. "Must Stimulating Demand Stimulate Inflation?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 52(140), pages 409-22, December.
  8. Kaldor, Nicholas [Lord], 1976. "Inflation and Recession in the World Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 86(344), pages 703-14, December.
  9. Scitovsky, Tibor, 1978. "Market Power and Inflation," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 45(179), pages 221-33, August.
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