Biography & Memoir Books:

Piero Sraffa, Unorthodox Economist (1898-1983)

A Biographical Essay



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Piero Sraffa, Unorthodox Economist (1898-1983) by Jean Pierre Potier
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Piero Sraffa's work has given rise to deep and lasting controversy in economic theory, and yet the most people know about him is that he worked very slowly, produced very little much of which was cryptic. However, the intellectual and political life documented by this biography is surprisingly rich and varied. A friend of Gramsci, a colleague of Keynes and a correspondent of Wittgenstein, he made contributions to economics, politics and philosophy for over sixty years. This book discusses his intellectual evolution from his student days to his extended period as librarian at the Marshall Library of Economics in Cambridge. Charting Sraffa's political development in Italy to the point where he was forced to flee Mussolini's regime, the book pays particular attention to his relationship with Gramsci, detailing both their protracted and wide-ranging philosophical discussions and his central role in preserving The Prison Notebooks . However, it is for his work at Cambridge that Sraffa is most widely remembered. The Cambridge he found was on the threshold of the Keynesian revolution, but the contributions Sraffa was to make went beyond economics and he was to influence Ramsey and Wittgenstein, among others. The book concludes with a discussion of the slow evolution of Sraffa's masterworks, the edition of Ricardo's Collected Works and Production of Commodities by Means of Commodities .
Release date NZ
July 4th, 1991
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
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