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The Hesitant Hand:
Taming Self-Interest in the History of Economic Ideas
Steven G. Medema

Book Description | Table of Contents
Chapter 1 [in PDF format]


"There are too few nuanced accounts of economic policy, so Steven Medema's The Hesitant Hand: Taming Self-Interest in the History of Economic Ideas is a welcome addition to the economics literature. It should be widely read and discussed. . . . I strongly encourage anyone interested in thinking about economists and government policy to read this book; it gives a much better sense of how economists should think of policy analysis than just about any textbook."--David Colander, Eastern Economic Journal

"I finished reading Medema's book eager of a more complete picture of the microeconomic theorizing about the 'hesitant hand' in the twentieth century. I hope that in a future work Medema will give us this broader picture, displaying again the exemplary scholarship and outstanding narrative skills that he showed in this book."--Ivan Moscati, History of Economic Ideas

"The reader is offered a thought-provoking and beautifully written journey along three centuries of economic ideas. . . . Medema has produced a masterful example of how the traditional, 'thin' methodology of doing the history of economic thought may still be extremely useful and fertile. . . . The volume will also prove excellent as a teaching tool at graduate and undergraduate level and, at the same time, will cater to the needs of economists and other social scientists."--Nicola Giocoli, Journal of Economic Methodology


"Riveting. This is an outstanding book. The Hesitant Hand is interesting, scholarly, balanced, and very well-written. I learned a great deal."--Denis O'Brien, professor emeritus, Durham University

"This is a wonderfully clear book that will attract a lot of readers, especially among economists who do not normally consider history relevant to their concerns. Medema tells the story of how our understanding of government and the market has been changed as economists have relentlessly applied the self-interest model."--Roger E. Backhouse, University of Birmingham

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File created: 4/21/2017

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