Reflections on the Great Depression

Reflections on the Great Depression

Randall E. Parker

This book explores the most prominent economic explanations of the Great Depression and how it affected the lives, experiences, and subsequent thinking of economists who lived through that era. Presented in interview format, this collection of conversations with Moses Abramovitz, Morris Adelman, Milton Friedman, Albert Hart, Charles Kindleberger, Wassily Leontief, Paul Samuelson, Anna Schwartz, James Tobin, Herbert Stein and Victor Zarnowitz provides a record of their reflections on the economics of the Great Depression and on the major events which occurred during those critical years. This volume is also another chapter in the legacy of the interwar generation of economists and is intended as a token of gratitude for the contributions they have made to the economics profession. Randall Parker has given us a window into the lives of these gifted scholars and an important glimpse into the world that shaped them.


Randall E. Parker

Subjects: economics and finance, economic psychology


I would like to thank several individuals who were responsible for the completion of this book: My wife Monica for her love, friendship and unquestioned support. My entire family. I have never walked alone. May we all lead contemplative lives. Philip A. Rothman, valued colleague, world-class time series econometrician, and great friend. Gucharan S. Laumas, my friend and source of encouragement. I’m not sure I can ever repay what I owe. James S. Fackler and W. Douglas McMillin, thanks for all you have done for me. There are debts here as well that I am not sure I can repay. Ben Bernanke and James Hamilton. You fellows may not know it, but you are everything good people and great scientists should be. The economists of the interwar generation who so graciously agreed to speak with me. vi

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