The epistemological argument against socialism: A Wittgensteinian critique of Hayek and Giddens


Authors
Nigel Pleasants
University of Exeter
Abstract
Hayek's and Mises's argument for the impossibility of socialist planning is once again popular. Their case against socialism is predicated on an account of the nature of knowledge and social interaction. Hayek refined Mises's original argument by developing a philosophical anthropology which depicts individuals as tacitly knowledgeable rule-followers embedded in a 'spontaneous order' of systems of rules. Giddens, whose social theory is informed by his reading of Wittgenstein, has recently added his sociological support to Hayek's 'epistemological argument' against socialism. With the aid of an interpretation of Wittgenstein which emphasizes his philosophy of praxis , I attempt to 'deconstruct' Giddens's and Hayek's 'picture' of tacit knowledge and rule-following on which their argument against socialism is predicated.
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DOI 10.1080/00201749708602436
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References found in this work BETA

Whose Justice? Which Rationality?Alasdair MacIntyre - 1988 - University of Notre Dame Press.

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What Does Tacit Knowledge Actually Explain?Jonathan Perraton & Iona Tarrant - 2007 - Journal of Economic Methodology 14 (3):353-370.

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