War of the Ghosts: Marshall, Veblen, and Bartlett

Cook, Simon J and Foresti, Tiziana. 2016. War of the Ghosts: Marshall, Veblen, and Bartlett. History of Political Economy, 48(S1), pp. 44-70. ISSN 0018-2702 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The article discusses the historical relationship between economics and the tradition of experimental psychology established at Cambridge University. At the same time, we explore how the Cambridge model of the mind was implemented in the United States by Thorstein Veblen, who claimed instinct theory as a novel foundation for his evolutionary-institutional economics. While Veblen identified Alfred Marshall’s economics with an older version of psychology, our comparison of the psychological thought of these two economists, as well as our investigation into the social dimensions and possibilities of the Cambridge psychological tradition as developed in the early twentieth century by F. C. Bartlett, points to substantial common ground.

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Alfred Marshall, Thorstein Veblen, F. C. Bartlett, psychology, instinct theory, habit

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Institute of Management Studies


1 December 2016Published Online

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Date Deposited:

12 Sep 2019 15:22

Last Modified:

12 Mar 2021 12:03

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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