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J. S. Mill's Methodology of Political Economy


  • Marek Hudík


The article deals with Mill's views on methodology. The place taken by political economy in the general classification of knowledge is shown. This includes: natural distinction between physical and moral sciences (including non-reducibility of mental phenomena to physical phenomena) and definition of political economy as a separate science. Further, the concept of economic man as introduced by Mill is presented. Two methods, which Mill saw as appropriate for studying social phenomena - i. e. concrete deductive method and inverse deductive method - are examined. Finally, marginalist reinterpretation of Mill's methodology is suggested. This reinterpretation retains the major features of Mill's approach.

Suggested Citation

  • Marek Hudík, 2007. "J. S. Mill's Methodology of Political Economy," Acta Oeconomica Pragensia, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2007(5), pages 109-123.
  • Handle: RePEc:prg:jnlaop:v:2007:y:2007:i:5:id:88:p:109-123

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Chiarella, Carl & He, Xue-Zhong, 2003. "Heterogeneous Beliefs, Risk, And Learning In A Simple Asset-Pricing Model With A Market Maker," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(04), pages 503-536, September.
    2. Brock, William A. & Hommes, Cars H., 1998. "Heterogeneous beliefs and routes to chaos in a simple asset pricing model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 22(8-9), pages 1235-1274, August.
    3. Carl Chiarella, 1992. "The Dynamics of Speculative Behaviour," Working Paper Series 13, Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney.
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    More about this item


    methodology; J. S. Mill; Homo oeconomicus;

    JEL classification:

    • B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals
    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology


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