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Goldsmiths - University of London

The place of The General Theory in the Economics Canon

Repapis, Constantinos. 2020. The place of The General Theory in the Economics Canon. Iberian Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 7(1), pp. 79-92. [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This paper presents in non-technical language an interpretation of the argument of The General Theory, which is the importance of effective demand and its relation to human agency. It argues that The General Theory is not only a treatise on economic theory, but also, and more importantly, a treatise on methodology, i.e. how economists should reason when dealing with the complexity of the real world. Implicit in this analysis is a distinct position on the remit of the economist and the nature of economic advice and policy. This interpretation suggests that this understanding forms a new paradigm of thinking about the economy at large, centred around the concept of uncertainty. This insight developed into a new analytical tradition in economics, the Post-Keynesian School of economic thought that sees uncertainty and effective demand as the key analytical long-term concepts for understanding how the economy evolves through time.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):


John Maynard Keynes, Keynes’ General Theory, Keynesian, capitalism, Post-Keynesian

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Institute of Management Studies


12 March 2020Accepted
12 May 2020Published Online
3 June 2020Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

20 Apr 2020 15:10

Last Modified:

02 Jul 2020 10:47

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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