New Directions in Modern Economics series
Edited by Riccardo Bellofiore and Giovanna Vertova
According to The Telegraph, ‘During a briefing by academics at the London School of Economics on the turmoil on the international markets the Queen asked: “Why did nobody notice it?”’ That the mainstream(s) failed, and that capitalism was put into question, was an opinion widely shared for a few years after the 2007 subprime crisis, and the more so after Lehman Brothers collapsed in September 2008. So much so that The Financial Times, and even The Economist, had articles and series on the crisis in economics and the future of capitalism. We say mainstreams, using the plural, because the failure was equally distributed between freshwater and saltwater macroeconomics, as Paul Krugman calls them – between Chicago monetarism and new classical macro, and Harvard new Keynesian macro, as we knew them. The country where we live and teach, Italy, is an exception to this, since even to politely ask these questions raises the suspicion of some nostalgia for real socialism or of lobbying for unproductive State employees (as happened to one of us who edited a special supplement on the crisis).