Cambridge as an Academic Environment in the Early 1930s: A Reconstruction from the Late 1940s

  • Harry G. Johnson
Part of the Keynesian Studies book series (KST)


This paper owes its inspiration, and in part its justification, to a conversation with Don Patinkin in Jerusalem earlier this year, about the purpose and desired results of this Conference. Patinkin was anxious to talk about the relations between the (relatively few) economists with whom Keynes was personally and intellectually concerned during the transition from the Treatise to the General Theory, most of whom (especially if Hayek and Robbins at the London School of Economics are excluded as targets or butts representing ‘orthodoxy’) were Cambridge acquaintances, and most of those Cambridge colleagues. He was especially intrigued by the narrowness of the age differences among Keynes, Pigou, Robertson, and some others — a narrowness attributable to the appointment as Marshall’s successor of the youthful Pigou over the much older Foxwell (whose many Cambridge supporters Marshall outgeneraled) and the interruption of the academic careers of Pigou’s immediate juniors by the First World War — and he was anxious that this Conference should produce some understanding of what Cambridge was like in the period of writing of the General Theory, as an environment for economic discussion and research.


General Theory Interwar Period International Monetary System Economic Discussion Lecture Room 
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  1. 3.
    As an indication of the kind of debate I have in mind see Roger H. Stuewer (ed. ), Historical and Philosophical Perspectives of Science (1970).Google Scholar
  2. 4.
    In addition to their respective papers given to this Conference, see Elizabeth S. Johnson and Harry G. Johnson, ‘The Social and Intellectual Origins of the General Theory’ (1974).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Don Patinkin and J. Clark Leith 1977

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  • Harry G. Johnson

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