Feminist economics: an Austrian perspective

Journal of Economic Methodology 2 (2):259-280 (1995)
This paper attempts to assess the recent literature on feminist economics from the perspective of modern Austrian economics. Feminists and Austrians share many epistemological and methodological criticisms of neoclassical theory, although Austrians have never linked those criticisms to gender. Both groups argue that the attempt to mimic the methods of the natural sciences has been a particular source of trouble for neoclassicism. The paper suggests that these common points of criticism can serve as a starting point for dialogue between the two groups. Despite their similar criticisms, the groups do have divergent views on what economic theory should look like, as well as the policy conclusions that likely flow from those theories. The paper explores two examples of theoretical differences (the concept of utility and the relationship between competition and cooperation) and suggests ways that feminists and Austrians might begin to sort out their differences.
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