The Economics of being ‘Interesting’: Many kinds of exclusions

GER-LEWIS 2

This post engages with a conversational post titled Non-exemplary lives by Branko Milanovic. He is concerned with the current state of academia being filled with boring economists who have a CV full of publications but no experience of living and no interests outside work. Milanovic thus raises the question of how a lack of these influences impacts the profession of economics. 

While his is an apt observation, I think his questions can be broadened in many ways. For the sake of brevity, I will concentrate on a few. 

Exemplary Lives, but what kind of Examples? 

The notion of an ‘exemplary life’ is fraught with the possibilities of what a ‘non-exemplary life’ could be, and vice versa. To fully appreciate the scope of either, it is useful to question how the negation of the other can be fully gauged.

Put differently, is the ‘exemplary life’ really that exemplary- might there be a difference between the persona and the person? 

Consider what being an émigré has meant for two different economists: the Ukraine born Alexander Gerschenkron who settled in the US and the St-Lucian born Arthur Lewis who lived and worked in the UK.  Read More »