Terence Hutchison's 1938 essay: towards a reappraisal

Journal of Economic Methodology 10 (3):353-373 (2003)
Terence Hutchison's 1938 essay has been variously interpreted as introducing positivism, ultra?empiricism and Popperian falsificationism into economics. This paper argues that such interpretations are unfair and inaccurate. Moreover, they distract from his central message. The paper is divided into three main sections. The first seeks to demonstrate the extent to which Hutchison's essay differs from these previous interpretations. The second argues that Hutchison's central concern was to highlight and demonstrate the inadequacies of the traditional deductive method of ?classical? economics. The third contends that Hutchison is best interpreted as following in a long line of British empiricists and outlines some features of the ?empirical?inductive? approach that he supports.
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