Economic Sociology of Capitalist Development
Edited by Yuichi Shionoya and Tamotsu Nishizawa
Chapter 4: On the Relation between Economics and Sociology: Marshall and Schumpeter
* Richard Arena This contribution is devoted to the relationship between economics and sociology in the respective works of Alfred Marshall and Joseph Schumpeter. Diﬀerences are unavoidable between these authors if we consider their diﬀerent periods of life and their speciﬁc ways of connecting both disciplines. Marshall began to write papers and books in the period of birth and early development of sociology, while Schumpeter could attend and even participate in its period of maturity. However, in spite of these diﬀerences, we try to show that Marshall and Schumpeter shared a common conception of the role of economic theory within the realm of social science. To put it in a few words, they both considered that economic analysis (in its Schumpeterian sense) could not be reduced to pure economic theory as it is often argued in the post-Walrasian tradition (in contradiction, however, to the works of Léon Walras himself) but had to combine this theory and history with the intermediary help of what Schumpeter called ‘economic sociology’ and Marshall called a ‘reasoned history of man’. Our chapter comprises two sections. The ﬁrst focuses on the nature of the complementarity that Marshall and Schumpeter pointed out between economic theory and sociology. The second shows how both authors incorporated the investigation of organization forms and economic institutions within economic analysis, and why their approaches may provide some ideas and tools for the modern economist who is not satisﬁed with axiomatic approaches. 65 66 Social science and evolution...
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