The purpose of this paper is to discuss some aspects of the work of a distinguished economist, 1 who played an important part in the revolution in monetary theory of the twenties and thirties, the revolution which, in most people's minds, is exclusively associated with the name of Keynes. That there were others, of his generation, such as Pigou and Robertson who were also to some extent associated with it, appears even from a reading of the General Theory (1936) itself; though in that work they appear as little more than sparring-partners. If, however, one goes back to the Treatise on Money (1930)—and it is essential, for a full understanding of the General Theory, to go back to the Treatise—one finds that the part which they play in the later work is played by Hawtrey. I maintain that it is from Hawtrey that the story begins (the English story, that is, for I put on one side, in this paper, what was happening in Sweden 2).
Hawtrey's Currency and Credit was published in 1919; thus it antedates every one of the 'new' monetary writings of Keynes. It was the standard work on monetary theory that was used, during the twenties, in the Cambridge Tripos; 3 thus it was natural than an important part of the Treatise should take the form of a reply to it. A reply to it, on the matters where Keynes and Hawtrey differed; I shall come to these in
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Publication information: Book title: Economic Perspectives: Further Essays on Money and Growth. Contributors: J. R. Hicks - Author. Publisher: Clarendon Press. Place of publication: Oxford. Publication year: 1977. Page number: 118.
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