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The Limits of Public Choice: A Sociological Critique of the Economic Theory of Politics Lars Udehn(Author)

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Book The Limits of Public Choice: A Sociological Critique of the Economic Theory of Politics

The Limits of Public Choice: A Sociological Critique of the Economic Theory of Politics

Available in PDF - DJVU Format | The Limits of Public Choice: A Sociological Critique of the Economic Theory of Politics.pdf

 

Original name book: The Limits of Public Choice: A Sociological Critique of the Economic Theory of Politics

Pages: 464

Language: English

Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (December 27, 1995)

By: Lars Udehn(Author)

Book details


Format *An electronic version of a printed book that can be read on a computer or handheld device designed specifically for this purpose. *Report a Broken Link

PDF
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Printable? Yes

Category - New, Used & Rental Textbooks

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Public choice has been one of the most important developments in the social sciences in the last twenty years. However there are many people who are frustrated by the uncritical importing of ideas from economics into political science. Public Choice uses both empirical evidence and theoretical analysis to argue that the economic theory of politics is limited in scope and fertility. In order to arrive at a more comprehensive understanding of political life, political scientists must learn from both economists and sociologists.

Lars Udehn is Researcher and Lecturer in Sociology at the Universities of Uppsala and Stockholm.

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Customer Reviews
  • By T. Carlsson on September 17, 2012

    This book is a critique of the "public choice" approach in political science which draws inspiration from microeconomics by emphasizing self-interest, exchange and individualism among political actors. The public choice school advocates smaller government and in this regard it has much in common with libertarian thought. The author notes that few proponents of public choice would today consider it an all-inclusive model of political life. Even common sense should be enough to dispel the notion that politicians always act as self-serving egoists.But assuming that public choice is a partially correct description, the interesting questions are what other motives there are for political action except self-interest, what the relative importance of these different motives are and how well collective and co-operative political actions can be understood through different theoretical perspectives. The author sets out to answer these questions by marshalling an impressive amount of theory and empirical evidence. As you might guess from the title of this book, his conclusion is that the value of public choice models is quite low and that many other models in political sociology give more accurate perspectives on how political systems work.So much for content. As for style, the author has an unfortunate habit of endlessly commenting on other people's works. He seems like an intelligent writer but for some reason he hides his own perspective like a cautious student, sticking closely to other people's ideas. I know it's good academic practice to build on earlier work, but there should be enough room for some original ideas if you write a 350-page book. In the end the lack of a personal perspective made this book a tedious read. It's basically a very long literature review. Try Bunge's Social Science Under Debate instead, it contains a better critique of public choice theory and economic modeling in general.

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