Full text: A Portrait-Sketch of Michal Kalecki

The young Kalecki now had to earn his own living. He made 
enquiries on business mens' solvency for a buro which sold 
information to creditors. He also wrote articles pn practical 
economic problems for newspapers and journals, an activity 
which became more prominent after he moved to Warsaw. He 
also wrote for a socialist journal and was connected with the 
left wing of the socialist movement. He married Ada Sternfeld 
who remained his inseparable companion whose devotion was the 
counterweight against so many adverse circumstances. 
In 1929 he applied for a job in the Institute for Business 
Cycle and Price Research which was directed by Edward Lipinski 
who instinctively understood the merits of his candidate and 
engaged him. Kalecki now worked intensively in the empirical 
field which was the solid ground from which his theory grew. 
Already in his student days he had got hold of a book by 
Tugan-Baranowski which dealt with the department schemes of 
Marx. This book fascinated him, and he then read Marx. The 
department scheme became for him the starting point of an 
underconsumption theory. I can not guarantee that he really 
knew nothing about other economic doctrines but it is certain 
that he was not much burdened with this luggage in his early 
voyages of economic discoveries. His results were embodied in a 
small booklet on the trade cycle (1933) the contents of which 
became accessible to readers in the west by papers in Econometrica 
(1935) and the Revue d'Economie Politique (1935).

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