Was Frank Knight an Institutionalist?
AbstractThis paper critically examines Geoffrey Hodgson's provocative claim that Frank Knight was a member of the American institutionalist school in the interwar years. In the first section of the paper we provide a definition of institutionalism and emphasize its meaning from a historiographic point of view. The second and third sections analyse the two main methodological struggles between Knight and the institutionalists, namely, the debate during the early 1920s over the use of instinct theory as an explanation of economic behaviour, and the subsequent campaign led by Knight in the late 1920s and early 1930s against the behaviourist wing of American institutionalism a la Copeland and Ayres. The fourth section deals with Knight's own brand of institutionalism. Our main conclusions are that, even if Knight's approach to the study of economic behaviour shows significant affinities with American institutionalism, he was not—both sociologically and in terms of his philosophical premises—an institutionalist.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Taylor and Francis Journals in its journal Review of Political Economy.
Volume (Year): 20 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://taylorandfrancis.metapress.com/link.asp?target=journal&id=102233
Other versions of this item:
- B15 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary
- B25 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary; Austrian
- B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Knight, Frank H., 1922. "Ethics and the Economic Interpretation," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 36, pages 454-481, May.
- Pier Francesco Asso & Luca Fiorito, 2004. "Lawrence Kelso Frank's Proto-Ayresian Dichotomy," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 36(3), pages 557-578, Fall.
- Asso, Pier Francesco & Fiorito, Luca, 2004. "Human Nature and Economic Institutions: Instinct Psychology, Behaviorism, and the Development of American Institutionalism," Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(04), pages 445-477, December.
- Rutherford, Malcolm, 2002. "Morris A. Copeland: A Case Study in the History of Institutional Economics," Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(03), pages 261-290, September.
- Luca Fiorito, 2009. "The Institutionalists’ Reaction to Chamberlin’s 'Theory of Monopolistic Competition'," Department of Economics University of Siena 560, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Michael McNulty).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.