Vincent Barnett welcomes a new introductory text on the most important modern British economist.
Haus Publishing, 2007
168 pages, £9.99
It is clear that the credit crunch of 2008, and the economic contraction that followed it, is a return to a classic expression of the financial bust inevitably following a boom that Gordon Brown infamously claimed to have abolished. Those with long memories will remember that something similar was claimed about Keynesian economics in the 1960s, that the techniques of demand management that were prescribed by Keynes had banished structural unemployment to the dustbin of history – that was until the 1970s. It is ironic that the solutions being applied today to solve the consequences of the 2008 credit crunch might appear to be ‘Keynesianism gone mad’ in terms of the unprecedented scale of the financial rescue packages that have been applied. It is timely, then, to review a new introductory account of Keynes’s life and contributions to economics with this context in mind.