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On Sraffa, post-Keynesian theories of pricing and capitalist competition: Some observations

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  • Stephanie Blankenburg


    (School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, UK)

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    The paper explores the implications of the 1920s 'cost controversy' for heterodox economic theory (here limited to post-Keynesian and Sraffian analysis). It argues that neither neoclassical nor heterodox theories have found viable solutions to the basic dilemma posed by the 'cost controversy', namely how to reconcile a general theory of price with that of growth and accumulation. The a priori commitment of neoclassical theory to a symmetric theory of exchange and production means that the impasses met by Walrasian general equilibrium theory and by the New Endogenous Growth Theory cannot be resolved, while also preserving explanatory power. For the case of post-Keynesian and Sraffian theory, it is suggested that, while a claim to "a general theory of everything" is also unsustainable, a reconsideration of the methodological roots of Sraffa’s own analysis and of core aspects of classical theories of competition, might open an avenue to providing an empirically relevant heterodox theory of contemporary corporate capitalism.

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    Article provided by Edward Elgar Publishing in its journal Intervention. European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies.

    Volume (Year): 8 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 183-200

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    Handle: RePEc:elg:ejeepi:v:8:y:2011:i:1:p183-200
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    1. Anonymous, 0. "1992 Winter," CWAE Newsletter, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Committee on Women in Agricultural Economics (CWAE).
    2. anonymous, 2009. "Which came first—democracy or growth?," Inside the Vault, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Spring.
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    4. Anonymous, 0. "1992 Spring," CWAE Newsletter, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Committee on Women in Agricultural Economics (CWAE).
    5. Fine, Ben, 2000. "Endogenous Growth Theory: A Critical Assessment," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(2), pages 245-265, March.
    6. -, 2009. "Economic growth in the Caribbean," Sede Subregional de la CEPAL para el Caribe (Estudios e Investigaciones) 38668, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL).
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