Full text: Note on the Fragmentation of Disciplines

pretation of data (what you might call the "textual 
criticism" of the applied statistician ), nor do they 
care, in many cases, for economic problems at all. 
They concentrate either on method (which in this way 
tends to become an end in itself) or on formal problems 
(Bagnar Frisch spoke of "playo-metrics" as long ago as 
1956)* The bulk of economists are unable to understand 
the econometricians and to make use of their work. 
I think that originally, at its inception, econometrics 
was conceived as something different, as a tool of 
Another split has been developping more recently. In 
view of the fact that a great part of economics has been 
emptied of all social (or "societal", political, 
institutional) contents, there is now a move to 
establish a new subject (with new chairs, to be sure) 
called "political economy" or "economics of power" 
which no doubt will exclude the work of the other eco 
nomists as much as vice versa. This parody of social 
science is of course connected with another division 
which is now a century old: The split between Marxism 
and the ordinary academic economics (in the West). The 
non-communication between these groups has done very 
much harm to both of them.

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