W. Stark, J.M. Keynes, and the Mercantilists

Repapis, Constantinos. 2021. W. Stark, J.M. Keynes, and the Mercantilists. Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 43(1), pp. 27-54. ISSN 1053-8372 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

In this paper we investigate Werner Stark’s sociology of knowledge approach in the history of economic thought. This paper explores: 1) The strengths and weaknesses of Stark’s approach to historiography, 2) seeing how this can frame an understanding of mercantilist writings and, 3) develop a link between a pluralist understanding of economics, and the sociology of knowledge approach. The reason for developing this link is to extend the sociology of knowledge approach to encompass a pluralist understanding of economic theorising and, at the same time, clarify the link between context and economic theory. John Maynard Keynes’ practice of building narratives of intellectual traditions as evidenced in The General Theory is used to develop a position between an understanding of history of economic thought as the evolution of abstract and de-contextualized economic theorising and, the view of economic theory as only relevant within the social conditions from which it arose.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):



Werner Stark, sociology of knowledge, history of economic thought, John Maynard Keynes, The General Theory

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Institute of Management Studies


19 December 2019Accepted
15 February 2021Published Online
March 2021Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

20 Apr 2020 15:17

Last Modified:

26 Mar 2021 14:43

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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