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Disputed (Disciplinary) Boundaries. Philosophy, Economics, Value Judgments

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This paper aims to address the following two questions: a) what is the logic of the kind of discourse that seeks to found, demarcate or defend the autonomy or the boundaries of a discipline; b) why does this discourse, whether methodological, ontological or epistemological, sometimes turn into normative, dogmatic-excommunicating wrangles among disciplines, schools or scholars? I will argue that an adequate answer may be found if we understand: 1) disciplines as institutions and, therefore, as dogmatic systems, where scholars’ discourse often takes the form of a legitimizing discourse regarding the founding Reference of their own discipline; 2) that scholars speak in the name of that very foundation, with which they closely identify; 3) that the issue of the legitimacy of a discipline cannot easily be separated from the issue of identity and, therefore, of a scholar’s legitimacy; 4) that the excommunication may arise not only when the founding Reference is absolutized, but also as a form of self-defense of a scholar’s identity-legitimacy. To understand these claims I will re-examine three paradigmatic positions: the methodological, ontological and epistemological considerations put forward by (and the debates between) Pareto, Croce and Einaudi – with specific reference to the demarcation between philosophy, economics and value-judgments.

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  • Silvestri, Paolo, 2017. "Disputed (Disciplinary) Boundaries. Philosophy, Economics, Value Judgments," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201704, University of Turin.
  • Handle: RePEc:uto:dipeco:201704
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    1. Roberto Marchionatti & Francesco Cassata & Giandomenica Becchio & Fiorenzo Mornati, 2013. "When Italian economics "Was Second to None". Luigi Einaudi and the Turin School of Economics," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(5), pages 776-811, October.
    2. Silvestri, Paolo, 2007. "Rileggendo Einaudi e Croce: spunti per un liberalismo fondato su un’antropologia della libertà
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      ," MPRA Paper 59612, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
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      [Good government]
      ," MPRA Paper 62315, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2010.
    7. Silvestri, Paolo, 2010. "Veritas, Auctoritas, Lex. Scienza economica e sfera pubblica: sulla normatività del 'Terzo'
      [Veritas, Auctoritas, Lex. Economic Science and Public Sphere: On the Normativity of the 'Third']
      ," MPRA Paper 59538, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2009.
    8. Patrick Mardellat, 2009. "Max Weber's critical response to theoretical economics," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(4), pages 599-624.
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    10. Philippe Mongin, 2006. "Value Judgments and Value Neutrality in Economics," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 73(290), pages 257-286, May.
    11. Silvestri, Paolo, 2012. "The ideal of good government in Luigi Einaudi's Thought and Life: Between Law and Freedom," MPRA Paper 55351, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Silvestri, Paolo, 2010. "Liberalismo, legge, normatività. Per una rilettura epistemologica del dibattito Croce-Einaudi
      [Liberalism, law, normativity. For an epistemological re-reading of the Croce-Einaudi debate]
      ," MPRA Paper 60051, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2009.
    13. Aldo Montesano, 2003. "Croce e la scienza economica," Economia politica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 2, pages 201-224.
    14. Forte, Francesco & Silvestri, Paolo, 2015. "Luigi Einaudi," MPRA Paper 62319, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2014.
    15. Constanze Binder & Conrad Heilmann & Jack Vromen, 2015. "The future of the philosophy of economics: papers from the XI. INEM Conference at Erasmus University Rotterdam," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(3), pages 261-263, September.
    16. Amedeo Fossati & Paolo Silvestri, 2012. "Un inedito dissidio epistemologico sui miti e paradossi della giustizia tributaria di einaudi: le lettere perdute di Mauro Fasiani," STUDI ECONOMICI, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2012(108), pages 5-80.
    17. 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.
    18. Kincaid, Harold & Ross, Don (ed.), 2009. "The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Economics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195189254.
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