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Plan it mañana

Geoffrey Hawthorn: Albert O. Hirschman

10 September 2014
Wordly Philosopher: The Odyssey of Albert O.​ Hirschman 
by Jeremy Adelman.
Princeton, 740 pp., £27.95, April 2013, 978 0 691 15567 8
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The Essential Hirschman 
edited by Jeremy Adelman.
Princeton, 367 pp., £19.95, October 2013, 978 0 691 15990 4
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... In June 1940​ a French lieutenant issued false passes. ‘Sauve qui peut,’ he said. ‘Il faut se débrouiller.’ Get out of this as best you can. AlbertHirschman would say that he’d been a débrouillard all his life. He’d left Berlin in 1933, sought an education in Paris and London, fought in Spain, worked in Trieste, fled back to France, enlisted, and ...

The Wrong Way Round

Geoffrey Hawthorn

17 September 1987
Rival Views of​ Market Society, and Other Recent Essays 
by Albert Hirschman.
Viking, 197 pp., £18.95, November 1986, 0 670 81319 2
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Development, Democracy and the Art of​ Trespassing: Essays in Honour of Albert​ Hirschman 
edited by Alejandro Foxley, Michael McPherson and Guillermo O’Donnell.
Notre Dame, 379 pp., $25.95, October 1986, 0 268 00859 0
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... The 20th century,’ Charles Sabel remarks in his essay in the collection in honour ofAlbertHirschman, ‘has been a gigantic lesson in the transformability of theories, political programmes and institutions through their recombination in new contexts.’ It is a revealing remark. For although most of what now goes on in the ‘advanced’ societies – in ...

Trespasser

Jon​ Elster

16 September 1982
Essays in Trespassing: Economics to Politics and Beyond 
by Albert Hirschman.
Cambridge, 310 pp., £20, September 1981, 0 521 23826 9
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Shifting Involvements 
by Albert Hirschman.
Martin Robertson, 138 pp., £9.95, September 1982, 0 85520 487 7
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... In Anglo-American social science AlbertHirschmanoccupies a position at once central and peripheral, or at least anomalous. Of his centrality there can be no doubt. As one of three permanent members of the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, he has a unique vantage-point for gathering and influencing scholars from all over the world. His Strategy for Economic ...

Leave, and Leave Again

William Davies: The Brexit Mentality

7 February 2019
... didn’t get the wording he wanted for the 2014 Scottish independence referendum – the Electoral Commission considered ‘Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?’ too much of a leading question – but he did at least make sure that his side would be fighting for a ‘yes’. The campaign to legalise abortion in Ireland, which won with a thumping ‘yes’ vote in last ...
18 August 1983
Palanpur: The Economy of​ an Indian Village 
by C.J. Bliss and N.H. Stern.
Oxford, 340 pp., £15, October 1982, 0 19 828419 5
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... How can you hide a book that makes a substantial contribution to economic theory? Well, you can call it Palanpur, which is the name of a tiny Indian village. (I look forward to picking up my economic theory in the future from books with such titles as Eynsham and Leamington Spa.) But, in fact, the title is no mystery. This boo...
3 April 1980
... An anthropologist friend despairs at his subject. It has, he says, collapsed into the assertionof necessary relations between brothers-in-law and beavers. It is obsessed with classification. He barely exaggerates. Its history, as Douglas and Isherwood proudly recall,* has been one of ...

Am I right to be angry?

Malcolm Bull: Superfluous Men

2 August 2018
Age of​ Anger: A History of​ the Present 
by Pankaj Mishra.
Penguin, 416 pp., £9.99, February 2018, 978 0 14 198408 7
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... In​ The Passions and the Interests, published in 1977, AlbertHirschman revisited the 18th-century argument that the pursuit of worldly self-interest might be the most effective way of controlling destructive emotions like anger. The pursuit of interests that are constant and predictable potentially offers an escape from the see-saw effect of trying to curb one passion with another ...

Here we go again

Rory Stewart: The Libyan Intervention

31 March 2011
... Until yesterday, I thought we were at the end of the age of intervention. The complacency that followed the collapse of the Soviet Union had been shattered by the Balkan wars; despair was followed by the successful interventions in Bosnia and then Kosovo; then triumphal pride led us to disaster in Iraq and Afghanistan ...

Basismo

Anthony Pagden

13 June 1991
The Cambridge History of​ Latin America. Vol. VII: 1930 to the Present 
edited by Leslie Bethell.
Cambridge, 775 pp., £70, October 1990, 0 521 24518 4
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Magical Reels: A History of​ Cinema in Latin America 
by John King.
Verso,​ 266 pp., £29.95, November 1990, 0 86091 295 7
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Democracy and Development in Latin America: Economics, Politics and Religion​ in the Post-war Period 
by David Lehmann.
Polity, 235 pp., £29.50, April 1990, 0 7456 0776 4
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... Mexico, Mexicans sometimes say, is too far from God and too close to the United States of America. The same could be said of the whole of Latin America. Ever since the declarationof the Monroe Doctrine of 1823, a piece of political effrontery which sought to deny a role in the affairs of the hemisphere to any extra-continental power, most North American administrations have ...

Economic Performance

Sydney Checkland

19 April 1984
The Victorian Economy 
by François Crouzet, translated by Anthony Forster.
Methuen, 430 pp., £18, June 1982, 0 416 31110 5
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British Economic Growth 1856-1973 
by R.C.O.​ Matthews, C.H. Feinstein and J.C. Odling-Smee.
Oxford, 712 pp., £37.50, October 1982, 0 19 828453 5
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The Cambridge Economic History of​ Europe. Vol. VII: The Industrial Economies: Capital, Labour and Enterprise 
edited by Peter Mathias.
Cambridge, 832 pp., £13.50, June 1982, 0 521 28800 2
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... Thirty years ago or less, students of Britain’s economic performance were offered as their centrepiece questionone that was highly flattering to their own country: how did Britain achieve the miracle of the Industrial Revolution and ...

All Curls and Pearls

Lorraine Daston: Why are we so curious?

23 June 2005
The Uses of​ Curiosity in Early Modern France and Germany 
by Neil Kenny.
Oxford, 484 pp., £68, July 2004, 0 19 927136 4
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... There has probably never been a society that did not erect barriers to certain kinds of knowledge. Moralists since Greek and Roman antiquity have frowned on busybodies who pry into their neighbours’ private lives; medieval Christian theologians condemned necromancers who wanted to discover the secrets of demons; today we fret about state surveillance ...

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