Edited by Louis-Philippe Rochon and Hassan Bougrine
Chapter 4: Two easy pieces
My path into heretical thinking in monetary macroeconomics has been deeply influenced by Marc Lavoie and Mario Seccareccia. The intellectual link was, of course, Augusto Graziani, whose evolution I began to follow closely since my first years of study and research. In my experience, since 1977 (if not even before) to read Graziani was to be introduced to his version of the theory of the monetary circuit. I was part of the ‘heroic’ early years of the Italian approach to the monetary circuit, mostly represented by the Seminar in Naples about Monetary Theory (1981–1985). This meant a confrontation and dialogue with the other French versions, the one held by Alain Parguez and the quite different one by Bernard Schmitt. In 1982 there was also a confrontation in Nice, with a group around Richard Arena (and to which Jan Kregel participated). It is against this background that my encounter with Marc and Mario returns in my recollections. I think I met Marc for the first time in Louvain-la-Neuve, in 1985, thanks to some initiative (I was there as a visiting professor) promoted by Michel de Vroey who, at the time, was involved in a difficult intellectual trajectory trying to find a bridge from Marx to monetary heterodoxies, involving also Aglietta, and Benetti and Cartelier. I confess I remained stuck there, at the meeting between Marx and Keynes, and Schumpeter too: I am definitely a slow learner, while Michel is nowadays very far away from that. I asked Lavoie for a survey of the theory of the monetary circuit, which was likely the first of its kind in print, in a special section on money edited by me, for an Italian theoretical journal, Metamorfosi (Lavoie, 1987a). The original French version appeared the same year in Monnaie et Production, the special series that Alain edited for Economies et Societies for many happy years (Lavoie, 1987b).
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