John Maynard Keynes of Bloomsbury: Four Short Talks..

Nice paper by four econs — Craufurd Goodwin, Kevin D. Hoover, E. Roy Weintraub, Bruce Caldwell. All four are from HOPE Centre at Duke Univ.

Each of the four talk about Keynes and his association with his elite Bloomsbury group:

Four talks on Keynes in relation to the Bloomsbury Group: I. Maynard Keynes of Bloomsbury (Craufurd Goodwin); II. Keynes as Policy Advisor (E. Roy Weintraub); III. Keynes and Economics (Kevin D. Hoover); IV. Keynes and Hayek (Bruce Caldwell). The talks were delivered as part of roundtable discussion on John Maynard Keynes of Bloomsbury, the inaugural event of the Center for the History of Political Economy at Duke University, and were held in conjunction with Vision and Design: A Year of Bloomsbury, a campus-wide interdisciplinary program surrounding an exhibition of Bloomsbury art at Duke University’s Nasher Museum.

Key ideas by each of the four:

Crauford Goodwin:

My main message this evening is that John Maynard Keynes (Maynard to his friends), contrary to popular belief and recent caricatures in the media, was much more than a tax and spend liberal. Indeed, he was a liberal only in the  original sense of that term, in that he placed the highest value on human  freedom, and he believed that this freedom could most likely be gained and preserved within a smoothly functioning competitive market economy. Unlike many of the economists of his time, notably the so­called “American  Institutionalists” with whom he is often mistakenly grouped, he was deeply  suspicious of government and was constantly searching for solutions to economic problems through actions in the private sector rather than the public sphere. Maynard Keynes served in government for extended periods throughout his career, so he really knew whereof he wrote.

E. Roy Weintraub sums up various roles Keynes played in policy.

Kevin D. Hoover discusses Keynes central economics ideas: The Fallacy of Composition, Uncertainty, The Role of Government and Do It Now.

Bruce Caldwell talks on relationship between Keynes and Hayek. It was not healthy but not as bad as it is made out to be.

Caldwell ends with a nice Keynes quote:

So I will end with one of my favorite Keynes’ quotes, one that is always popular with my students, and one which should make our transition to the reception  awaiting us a bit easier. A few weeks before he died Keynes was asked in anKeynes and Hayek Caldwell interview if there were anything that he would have done differently. His response was: “I would have drunk more champagne!”

Super light read on Keynes..

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