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The Walras Paradox

  • Roger Koppl

    (Fairleigh Dickinson University)

Some standard interpretations of Leon Walras' political economy are challenged by a study of his philosophical and political ideas. Walras thought that his general-equilibrium theory was both a normative scheme and pure science. This "Walras paradox" is resolved by an understanding of the metaphysical ideas he borrowed from the French "eclectic" philosopher Etienne Vacherot. For Walras, general-equilibrium theory provides the foundations for "scientific socialism," A (non-Marxian) synthesis of liberalism and socialism. This interpretation of general-equilibrium theory shows that common ideas about "neoclassical" economics do not fit Walras.

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File URL: http://college.holycross.edu/RePEc/eej/Archive/Volume21/V21N1P43_55.pdf
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Article provided by Eastern Economic Association in its journal Eastern Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 21 (1995)
Issue (Month): 1 (Winter)
Pages: 43-55

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Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:21:y:1995:i:1:p:43-55
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