Economics has long had its enemies. The question is, why? What, precisely, is it about economics that its critics oppose? William Coleman seeks to tell the story of «anti-economics», «to take its measure» (p. 3), and then finally to defend economics from these attacks. His is a broad, sweeping study that uses a wide lens, panoramically over time, to survey the opposition. The crisis in economics, edited by Edward Fullbrook, provides us instead with a detailed snapshot of a recent sort of anti-economics - the Post-Autistic Economics (PAE) movement that originated among French economics students in 2000. Both serve to remind economists that ours is a peculiarly situated discipline, one which seems to draw criticism and which might be well-served by «taking measure of», as Coleman puts it, serious criticism. The profession is largely ignorant of its intellectual enemies; that unwillingness to engage in discussion with its critics, has in part caused the frustration that underscores the PAE movement.

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Copyright © 2004 University of Pisa Press. This article first appeared in History of Economic Ideas 12:2 (2004), 97-106.

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