chapter  32
29 Pages

METHOD AND METHODOLOGY IN KEYNES’S GENERAL THEORY

ByBill Gerrard

The exact nature of the Keynesian revolution remains a matter of much debate. One key aspect of this debate is the level of Keynes’s contribution. Is Keynes’s General Theory to be considered primarily as a contribution at the level of theory or does it also make a contribution at the more fundamental level of method? Even amongst those who adopt a radical interpretation of Keynes’s General Theory there is still no widely agreed view on the level of Keynes’s contribution. Chick (1978) and Milgate (1982), for example, offer two contrasting views on the issue. Chick, in criticism of Clower’s neo-Walrasian interpretation of Keynes, states that:

the formal nature of the ‘Keynesian Revolution’ …involved the complete overthrow of the static method of solving a set of simultaneous equations, in favour of analysing the results of decisions which are taken in a well-defined sequence, on the basis of information available at the time and forecasts of an uncertain future.