Edited by Robert W. Dimand and Harald Hagemann
Chapter 52: Lionel Robbins
Lionel Robbins (1898–1984) is most famous for his Essay on the Nature and Significance of Economic Science. He is also well known to have been “anti-Keynes” in the 1930s: in the early years of that decade he favoured Austrian views on the trade cycle with their implication that macroeconomic employment policy was useless or worse. However, during if not slightly before the Second World War he changed his mind about the efficacy of macroeconomic policy; after the war he admitted to being a “Keynesian” of sorts. This chapter considers his reactions to Keynes and his work in the 1930s, including his famous row with Keynes in 1930, in 1940–45 when he worked closely with Keynes in wartime government service, and in the years after Keynes’s death in 1946.
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