May 2012

Three questions to Ivan Moscati: Historicizing Choice Theory

Ivan Moscati is one of the most exciting voices in the historiography of decision theory. In 2007 he took the field by surprise with two important, widely cited, and deservingly prize winning articles: Early Experiments in Consumer Demand Theory, 1930-1970; and History of Consumer Demand Theory: 1930-1970. Read more

Let Us Praise Famous Men, or why we must praise them...

Steven Shapin is visiting the UK. For those unfamiliar with the history and sociology of science, he is one of the giants of the field. From the 1970s he has been in the thick of the action: a protagonist in the making and affirmation of the Edinburgh School; making the study of place and practice central features of the concerns and efforts of historians of science. He has always been ahead, leading, shaping (pardon the pun).   Read more

Contextualizing one and other @ ESHET 2012

My attempt at a double riddle. "I find familiar faces only in unfamiliar places. Who am I? And whom are the faces?" The answer to the first is, I am an academic, to the second, my conference buddies.  Read more

Let me tell you everything

Our usual problem in history (of economics) is a lack of information. Archival sources, if available at all, always present gaps of correspondence between people you just know should be there, and never contain that vital review report, or the minutes of that one crucial meeting. Moreover, if the people you write about are alive and willing to talk, it turns out they’re only human: they’ve forgotten the vast majority of their past, mix up events and people, mistake a recollection they once read for their own memory, or even willfully rewrite history. All too bad, although it gives us the possibility, perhaps even obligation, to speculate, interpret, and fill in. And then of course spend hours and hours discussing with one another whether we have done so correctly. Read more