IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/sae/reorpe/v49y2017i4p633-649.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

On the Theoretical and Practical Relevance of the Concept of Gift to the Development of a Non-imperialist Economics

Author

Listed:
  • Mario A. Cedrini
  • Roberto Marchionatti

Abstract

There is growing awareness of the need for interdisciplinary research on complex issues, but also of the obstacles that historical boundaries between social disciplines pose to such dialogue. It is increasingly recognized that the somewhat constitutive autonomy, the progressive autonomization, and finally the “imperialism†of economics have severely reduced the possibility of interdisciplinary discussion. This paper is a first step towards developing a research program on the foundations of a non-imperialist economics. It investigates gift exchange as a missed opportunity for economics. It aims at showing that, by refusing to tackle the complexity of the gift, economics has not only lost an opportunity to develop a method suitable for the analysis of complex problems, but has voluntarily chosen not to follow a path which would have prevented it from colonizing other disciplines. Reintroducing the concept of gift into the economic discourse may thus represent a required precondition to produce an innovating discourse on economics.

Suggested Citation

  • Mario A. Cedrini & Roberto Marchionatti, 2017. "On the Theoretical and Practical Relevance of the Concept of Gift to the Development of a Non-imperialist Economics," Review of Radical Political Economics, Union for Radical Political Economics, vol. 49(4), pages 633-649, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:reorpe:v:49:y:2017:i:4:p:633-649
    DOI: 10.1177/0486613416635040
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0486613416635040
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1177/0486613416635040?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ernst Fehr & Simon Gächter, 2000. "Fairness and Retaliation: The Economics of Reciprocity," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 159-181, Summer.
    2. Becker, Gary S, 1974. "A Theory of Social Interactions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(6), pages 1063-1093, Nov.-Dec..
    3. Fontana, Magda, 2010. "Can neoclassical economics handle complexity? The fallacy of the oil spot dynamic," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 584-596, December.
    4. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1985. "The Expanding Domain of Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(6), pages 53-68, December.
    5. Anna Carabelli & Mario Cedrini, 2010. "Keynes and the Complexity of International Economic Relations in the Aftermath of World War I," Journal of Economic Issues, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 1009-1028.
    6. Davis, John B., 2006. "The turn in economics: neoclassical dominance to mainstream pluralism?," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(1), pages 1-20, April.
    7. Philippe Fontaine, 2007. "From Philanthropy to Altruism: Incorporating Unselfish Behavior into Economics, 1961-1975," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 39(1), pages 1-46, Spring.
    8. Anna M. Carabelli & Mario A. Cedrini, 2010. "Global imbalances, monetary disorder, and shrinking policy space: Keynes's legacy for our troubled world," European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies: Intervention, Edward Elgar Publishing, vol. 7(2), pages 303-323.
    9. Davis, John B., 2013. "Economics Imperialism under the Impact of Psychology: The Case of Behavioral Development Economics," OEconomia, Editions NecPlus, vol. 2013(01), pages 119-138, March.
    10. Cedrini, Mario & Fontana, Magda, 2015. "Mainstreaming. Reflections on the Origins and Fate of Mainstream Pluralism," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201510, University of Turin.
    11. Paul Grauwe, 2011. "The eurozone as a morality play," Intereconomics: Review of European Economic Policy, Springer;ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics;Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), vol. 46(5), pages 230-231, October.
    12. Bruno S. Frey, 1997. "Not Just for the Money," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 1183, December.
    13. Akerlof, George A, 1984. "Gift Exchange and Efficiency-Wage Theory: Four Views," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 79-83, May.
    14. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
    15. Posner, Richard A, 1980. "A Theory of Primitive Society, with Special Reference to Law," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(1), pages 1-53, April.
    16. Bruno S. Frey & Matthias Benz, 2004. "From Imperialism to Inspiration: A Survey of Economics and Psychology," Chapters, in: John B. Davis & Alain Marciano & Jochen Runde (ed.), The Elgar Companion To Economics and Philosophy, chapter 4, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    17. Roberto Marchionatti, 2004. "What don't economists know now that Marshall knew a century ago? A note on Marshall's "sophisticated informality"," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(3), pages 441-460.
    18. Anna M. Carabelli & Mario A. Cedrini, 2014. "Chapter 18 of The General Theory ‘further analysed’: economics as a way of thinking," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 38(1), pages 23-47.
    19. Nancy Birdsall, 2004. "Seven Deadly Sins: Reflections on Donor Failings," Working Papers 50, Center for Global Development.
    20. Malinowski, Bronislaw, 1921. "The Primitive Economics of the Trobriand Islanders," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 31, pages 1-16.
    21. Kanbur, Ravi, 2006. "The economics of international aid," Handbook on the Economics of Giving, Reciprocity and Altruism, in: S. Kolm & Jean Mercier Ythier (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 26, pages 1559-1588, Elsevier.
    22. Kranton, Rachel E, 1996. "Reciprocal Exchange: A Self-Sustaining System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 830-851, September.
    23. David Colander, 2014. "The Wrong Type of Pluralism: Toward a Transdisciplinary Social Science," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(4), pages 516-525, October.
    24. Roberto Marchionatti, 2010. "J. M. Keynes, thinker of economic complexity," History of Economic Ideas, Fabrizio Serra Editore, Pisa - Roma, vol. 18(2), pages 115-146.
    25. Edward P. Lazear, 2000. "Economic Imperialism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 115(1), pages 99-146.
    26. John Foster, 2006. "Why Is Economics Not a Complex Systems Science?," Journal of Economic Issues, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(4), pages 1069-1091, December.
    27. Marchionatti, Roberto & Gambino, Enrico, 1997. "Pareto and Political Economy as a Science: Methodological Revolution and Analytical Advances in Economic Theory in the 1890s," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1322-1348, December.
    28. David Colander & Richard Holt & Barkley Rosser, 2004. "The changing face of mainstream economics," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(4), pages 485-499.
    29. Roberto Marchionatti, 2003. "Dealing with Complexity: Marshall and Keynes on the Nature of Economic Thinking," Palgrave Macmillan Books, in: Richard Arena & Michel Quéré (ed.), The Economics of Alfred Marshall, chapter 3, pages 32-52, Palgrave Macmillan.
    30. Marchionatti, Roberto, 2012. "The economists and the primitive societies," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 529-540.
    31. George A. Akerlof, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 97(4), pages 543-569.
    32. Andreoni, James, 1990. "Impure Altruism and Donations to Public Goods: A Theory of Warm-Glow Giving?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(401), pages 464-477, June.
    33. G. Liberopoulos & B. Tan & S.B. Gershwin & C.T. Papadopoulos & J. MacGregor Smith, 2004. "Preface," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 17-19, January.
    34. G. Liberopoulos & B. Tan & S.B. Gershwin & C.T. Papadopoulos & J. MacGregor Smith, 2004. "Preface," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 126(1), pages 17-19, February.
    35. Mark Blaug, 2001. "No History of Ideas, Please, We're Economists," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 145-164, Winter.
    36. Mark Blaug, 2001. "No History of Ideas, Please, We're Economists: Response," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 222-222, Fall.
    37. John B. Davis & Alain Marciano & Jochen Runde (ed.), 2004. "The Elgar Companion To Economics and Philosophy," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 2696, December.
    38. Yves Zenou & Philippe Batifoulier & Laurent Cordonnier, 1992. "L'emprunt de la théorie économique à la tradition sociologique. Le cas du don contre-don," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, vol. 43(5), pages 917-946.
    39. Anna M. Carabelli & Mario A. Cedrini, 2011. "Chapter 18 of the General Theory “Further Analysed”: The Theory of Economics as A Method," Working Papers 128, SEMEQ Department - Faculty of Economics - University of Eastern Piedmont.
    40. Cassata, Francesco & Marchionatti, Roberto, 2011. "A transdisciplinary perspective on economic complexity. Marshall's problem revisited," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 122-136.
    41. John B. Davis, 2008. "The turn in recent economics and return of orthodoxy," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 32(3), pages 349-366, May.
    42. Philippe Fontaine, 2012. "Beyond Altruism? Economics and the Minimization of Unselfish Behavior, 1975-93," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 44(2), pages 195-233, Summer.
    43. David Vines, 2003. "John maynard keynes 1937-1946: the creation of international macroeconomics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(488), pages 338-361, June.
    44. Fine, Ben, 2002. "Economics Imperialism and the New Development Economics as Kuhnian Paradigm Shift?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(12), pages 2057-2070, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Sergio Cesaratto, 2019. "Heterodox economics and Economic Anthropology: reflections prompted by two books," Department of Economics University of Siena 807, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    2. Silvestri, Paolo, 2018. "Welfare State and Taxation. The Critical Point of Freedom Between Gift and Corruption," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201803, University of Turin.
    3. Forsberg, Per, 2023. "Symbols in wood as a means of reciprocity: Accounting and social cohesion in pluralistic economies," CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES ON ACCOUNTING, Elsevier, vol. 96(C).
    4. Silvestri, Paolo, 2015. "Anthropology of freedom and tax justice: between exchange and gift. Thoughts for an interdisciplinary research agenda," MPRA Paper 67644, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Sergio Cesaratto & Stefano Di Bucchianico, 2020. "The surplus approach, Polanyi and institutions in economic anthropology and archaeology," Department of Economics University of Siena 828, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    6. Sergio Cesaratto & Stefano Di Bucchianico, 2021. "The Surplus Approach, the Polanyian Tradition, and Institutions in Economic Anthropology and Archaeology," Annals of the Fondazione Luigi Einaudi. An Interdisciplinary Journal of Economics, History and Political Science, Fondazione Luigi Einaudi, Torino (Italy), vol. 55(1), pages 185-216, June.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Cedrini, Mario & Fontana, Magda, 2015. "Mainstreaming. Reflections on the Origins and Fate of Mainstream Pluralism," CESMEP Working Papers 201501, University of Turin.
    2. Mario Cedrini & Magda Fontana, 2018. "Just another niche in the wall? How specialization is changing the face of mainstream economics [Multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity, transdisciplinarity, and the sciences]," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 42(2), pages 427-451.
    3. Frey, Bruno S. & Meier, Stephan, 2004. "Pro-social behavior in a natural setting," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 65-88, May.
    4. Marchionatti, Roberto, 2012. "The economists and the primitive societies," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 529-540.
    5. Bruno S. Frey & Stephan Meier, "undated". "Pro-Social Behavior, Reciprocity or Both?," IEW - Working Papers 107, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    6. Jeroen van de Ven, 2002. "The Demand for Social Approval and Status as a Motivation to Give," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 158(3), pages 464-482, September.
    7. Onyeiwu, Steve & Jones, Robert, 2003. "An institutionalist perception of cooperative behavior," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 233-248, July.
    8. Romaniuc, Rustam, 2017. "Intrinsic motivation in economics: A history," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 56-64.
    9. Stavros, Drakopoulos, 2021. "The Relation of Neoclassical Economics to other Disciplines: The case of Physics and Psychology," MPRA Paper 106597, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Mengyuan Zhou, 2022. "Does the Source of Inheritance Matter in Bequest Attitudes? Evidence from Japan," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 43(4), pages 867-887, December.
    11. Mengyuan Zhou, 2019. "The Effect of the Source of Inheritance on Bequest Attitudes: Evidence from Japan," Keio-IES Discussion Paper Series 2019-018, Institute for Economics Studies, Keio University.
    12. Cecere, Grazia & Mancinelli, Susanna & Mazzanti, Massimiliano, 2014. "Waste prevention and social preferences: the role of intrinsic and extrinsic motivations," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 163-176.
    13. van de Ven, J., 2000. "The Economics of the Gift," Other publications TiSEM c4c17d0c-941f-4bb6-b9e6-e, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    14. Bruno S. Frey, 2003. "Flexible Citizenship for a Global Society," Politics, Philosophy & Economics, , vol. 2(1), pages 93-114, February.
    15. Rebitzer, James B. & Taylor, Lowell J., 2011. "Extrinsic Rewards and Intrinsic Motives: Standard and Behavioral Approaches to Agency and Labor Markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 8, pages 701-772, Elsevier.
    16. Bruno S. Frey & Matthias Benz, 2004. "From Imperialism to Inspiration: A Survey of Economics and Psychology," Chapters, in: John B. Davis & Alain Marciano & Jochen Runde (ed.), The Elgar Companion To Economics and Philosophy, chapter 4, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    17. Krupka, Erin & Weber, Roberto A., 2009. "The focusing and informational effects of norms on pro-social behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 307-320, June.
    18. Kumar, Pradeep & Kant, Shashi, 2016. "Revealed social preferences and joint forest management outcomes," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 37-45.
    19. Currie, Janet & Lin, Wanchuan & Meng, Juanjuan, 2013. "Social networks and externalities from gift exchange: Evidence from a field experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 19-30.
    20. Anna M. Carabelli & Mario A. Cedrini, 2014. "Keynes's General Theory , Treatise on Money and Tract on Monetary Reform : different theories, same methodological approach?," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(6), pages 1060-1084, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    economics imperialism; interdisciplinarity; gift; economic methodology; economic thought; complexity;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification
    • B1 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:reorpe:v:49:y:2017:i:4:p:633-649. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: SAGE Publications (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.urpe.org/ .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.