Economics

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Topic 4: Late 19th Century Theories

1. Continental thought in the early 19th Century was shaped by a philosophy that rejected material things in favor of a search for inner truth. This philosophy was (a) Cartesian rationalism. (b) classical economics. (c) Marxian economics. (d) social rationalism. (e) dialectical materialism.

2. A school of thought influenced by Auguste Comte’s determinism, and which contended that Ricardians “confined the observations on which they based their reasoning to the small portion of the earth’s surface by which they were immediately surrounded,” and that economists “should instead study successive states of society to discover the laws of social affiliation,” was known as.: (a) Austrian theory. (b) Walrasian theory. (c) syndicalism. (d) British historicism. (e) Marxism.

3. Not among criticisms launched by British historicists at classical theory based on Ricardian notions was that: (a) major assumptions often lacked empirical justification. (b) interpretations of economic development were more or less useless outside of Great Britain. (c) classical theorists relied too heavily on “deterministic” theories of change. (d) classical theorists did not combine history and theory appropriately.

4. Stress on the concept of “… a necessary and continuous movement of humanity toward a teleological and predictable end,” is associated with: (a) Ricardian economics. (b) Marxism, the logical positivism of Auguste Comte, and the British historicists. (c) Walrasian general equilibrium theory. (d) the Social Darwinism of William Graham Sumner and Herbert Spencer.

5. Historicists and Marxists would tend to agree that: (a) society is continuously moving toward a teleological and predictable end. (b) distribution should be handled by a central authority. (c) induction and statistical verification are preferable to deduction and unverified abstraction. (d) class conflict is the root of economic and political evolution. (e) capitalism has no place in the evolution of society.

6. The initial development of the philosophy of logical positivism is usually attributed to (a) A.A. Cournot. (b) A.A. Milne. (c) Auguste Comte. (d) Adam Smith. (e) Adolph Menjou.

7. The position that ‘Social Dynamics’ drew heavily from historical examples and data, thereby making it the science of history, was argued by: (a) Charles Darwin. (b) Herbert Spencer. (c) Adam Smith. (d) Auguste Comte. (e) David Ricardo.

8. Mainstream economists have sometimes adopted bad theories (e.g., Ricardo’s labor theory of value) for long periods while overlooking far better theories. One example of an underappreciated theory was developed by Charles Babbage [1791-1871], who: (a) explored how technological advances foster economic growth. (b) categorized the dynamic gains associated with free international trade. (c) was first to illustrate the interdependencies between supply and demand. (d) developed an early model of how interest rates are determined in the market for loanable funds.

9. The multiple Factory Acts enacted in Great Britain during the nineteenth century were intended to: (a) repeal the Corn Laws. (b) reduce international trade barriers. (c) regulate the labor of pauper children. (c) limit the hours worked by the elderly. (e) set minimum wages for all factories in certain industries.

10. The Factory Act of the early 1800’s was not a single piece of legislation but rather several pieces, including limits on the number of hours and safety for child labor. A notable sponsor of these laws in the Parliament was: (a) philosopher John Stuart Mill. (b) the Duke of Wellington. (c) legal reformer Sir Edwin Chadwick. (d) Prime Minister Robert Peel. (e) economist Nassau Senior.

11. In the later half of the 19th century, the economist asked by the British government to evaluate the economic implications of the Factory Acts was: (a) William Gladstone. (b) John Stuart Mill. (c) Nassau Senior. (d)...
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