Methodological Shortcomings in Classical Mathematical Economics: A Critical Examination of the Contributions of Cournot, Jevons and Walras

Document Type: Research Paper



This paper examines critically the contributions of Cournot, Jevons and Walras as the founders of classical mathematical economics from a methodological standpoint. Advances in different economic schools and doctrines in the 19th century produced an environment of multi-dimensionality in economic analysis which was regarded by the pioneers of classical mathematical economists as a chaotic state. We have demonstrated that the formation of this new discipline, known equivalently as pure or scientific economics, was a response to this so-called chaotic state. We have also shown that the erroneous logic of abstraction in the sense of reducing a multi-dimensional economic system to a one-dimensional mechanical framework as the methodological basis of classical mathematical economics has been the origin of serious shortcomings in mathematical treatment of economics. Based on the writings of Jevons and Walras we have provided evidences to support the claim that advances in Marxian economics can be considered as the prime motive in the development of classical mathematical economics.


Article Title [Persian]

کاستی‌های روش شناسی در اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک: نقدی بر دستاوردهای کورنو، جونس و والراس

Author [Persian]

  • مسعود درخشان
Abstract [Persian]

در این مقاله دستاوردهای کورنو، جونس و والراس به عنوان بنیانگزاران اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک از دیدگاه روش‌شناسی نقد شده است. پیشرفت‌هایی که در مکاتب و آموزه‌های مختلف اقتصادی در قرن نوزدهم حاصل شد موجب گردید که فضایی از تحلیل های اقتصادی چند بعدی ایجاد شود که پیشکسوتان اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک آن را وضعیتی بحرانی تلقی کردند. نشان داده‌ایم که شکل‌گیری این دانش جدید که به اقتصاد محض یا اقتصاد علمی نیز شناخته می‌شود عکس‌العملی به چنین وضعیت بحرانی بوده‌است. همچنین این نکته را معلوم کرده‌ایم که خطای منطق تجرید به مفهوم تقلیل نظام اقتصادی چند بعدی به یک چارچوب مکانیکی تک بعدی به عنوان مبنای روش‌شناسی اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک، منشأ کاستی‌های جدی در نگرش ریاضی به اقتصاد بوده است. با استفاده از نوشتارهای جونس و والراس شواهدی را در حمایت از این ادعا مطرح کرده‌ایم که پیشرفت‌های حاصل در اقتصاد مارکس را می‌توان انگیزه‌ای قوی در توسعه اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک دانست.

Keywords [Persian]

  • روش شناسی اقتصاد ریاضی کلاسیک
  • کورنو
  • جونس
  • والراس
  • مارکس
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