John Neville Keynes's solution to the English Methodenstreit


In this paper I demonstrate that the arguments expounded by Keynes in The Scope and Method cannot be properly understood outside the context of the English Methodenstreit and argue that the skill with which he deployed the "passive-aggressive" strategy was instrumental in bringing an end to this long dispute and, ultimately, in causing the demise of the historicist movement.' It must be emphasized from the outset, however, that it is not my intention to contend that Keynes was some sort of Machiavellian figure who helped orchestrate a conspiracy, emanating from Cambridge, to destroy the historicist movement. Keynes was a good-natured and intellectually honest scholar who believed that it was his duty to find a middle course between two hostile parties, which, in his view, were needlessly tarnishing the image of the discipline of economics and distracting economists from undertaking genuine research.


peer-reviewed, Keynesian economics

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