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The Collected Interwar Papers and Correspondence of Roy Harrod
A three-volume collection of the papers and correspondence of economist Roy F. Harrod, dating from the period between World Wars I and II.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
`Besomi's collection is a valuable primary source for those interested in the development of economic thought up to the end of 1939.' -- Warren Young, Journal of the History of Economic Thought `This is a monumental piece of scholarship made possible by years of hard archive work and documentary organization concerning one of the most prominent authors in the history of economics . . . Besomi's work on Harrod, in short, is bound to occupy a privileged place on the shelves of all those who are eager to understand the economic theory in its historical evolution throughout the twentieth century.' -- Storia del Pensiero Economico `The Collected Interwar Papers and Correspondence of Roy Harrod has been edited in exemplary fashion by Daniele Besomi. . . Scholars will be grateful to Besomi as Harrod's papers are now scattered over three continents, including holdings in three Japanese universities. His editorial enterprise in assembling this collection has been most valuable. The volumes enable the reader to understand the background to the development of Harrod's thinking at a time when he was making important contributions to economic theory.' -- Nicholas H. Dimsdale, Oxford Economic Papers `A magnificent, fascinating, scholarly edition of the correspondence of an economist at the centre of two of the "revolutions" of the interwar period. Essential reading for those concerned with the development of economics of those years.' -- Donald E. Moggridge, University of Toronto, Canada `These volumes stand out as an outstanding editorial, documentary and scholarly achievement. They bring together Harrod's professional correspondence, some of his unpublished and published essays, providing an impressive body of evidence about Harrod's intellectual biography and environment. It will become standard reference for any study on the history of economic ideas of the interwar period.' -- Maria Cristina Marcuzzo, University of Rome, `La Sapienza', Italy `Roy Harrod made important contributions to the theory of the firm and international trade not to mention cycle and growth theory, he was more than a mere dabbler in philosophy, and he frequently ventured into policy debates. If his own particular ideas about how economics should be done, and policy implemented, ultimately didn't catch on very widely, they were nevertheless an important element in the intellectual ferment that marked our subject's development before its codification by post-war syllabus designers and textbook writers. A prolific correspondent and journalist, Harrod probably left too full a written record of his own thoughts on the issues of the day, both within economics and on the policy scene, for the entire good of his own posthumous reputation. But this record is an invaluable source for any historian of economic thought in inter-war Britain who wants to get a flavour of the excitement and diversity that surrounded its development. In this sense indeed, Harrod's weakness as a self-censor is a positive advantage. There was a good deal more to British economics in that era than Keynes and his Revolution, but it has sometimes been difficult to see things from any other perspective. Besomi's collection of Harrod's inter-war papers and correspondence makes it a little easier to inspect a sometimes familiar landscape from an alternative viewpoint, and for that reason alone it will be an invaluable source for scholars. We should all make sure that we have easy access to it in future, either in our own or our universities' libraries.' -- David Laidler, University of Western Ontario, Canada `Roy Harrod (1900-1978) was an eminent economist who made seminal contributions to several fields, most notably to business cycle theory and modern growth theory in the 1930s and 1940s. He also was official biographer of Keynes and served Churchill as a statistical adviser at the beginning of World War II. Daniele Besomi (born 1960) is the author of The Making of Harrod's Dynamics (1999) and an impressive number of journal articles which have illuminated Harrod's work from various perspectives. For this scholarly work Besomi received the highest honours from the two leading international associations for the history of economic thought. This three-volume collection of Harrod's interwar correspondence and papers, edited by Besomi, is fascinating reading. It is a presentation of a rich set of correspondence between Harrod and other leading economists of his time and a collection of formerly relatively inaccessible essays and press items which are a gold-mine for every scholar interested in the genesis of modern growth economics or Harrod's role as a public intellectual.' -- Harald Hagemann, University of Hohenheim, Germany