Advertisement

The Review of Austrian Economics

, Volume 31, Issue 3, pp 359–372 | Cite as

“Why historians have failed to recognize Mises’s Theory and History

  • Michael Douma
Article
  • 119 Downloads

Abstract

Theory and History is often said to be Ludwig von Mises’ least read and least appreciated book. This article argues that historians in the Anglo-American world generally did not understand the German and Austrian traditions that Mises drew on, and that their early reviews of the book therefore fundamentally misunderstood its purpose. Most saw it as a political tract. Some commented on Mises’ contribution to the debate about the autonomy of the discipline of history. Few, however, understood Mises’ apriorism or logical approach. To understand why Theory and History has not been recognized for its a contribution to historical methodology, we must first understand Mises’ place as an outsider in the debates on historiography in the 1950s.

Keywords

Mises Theory and history Popper Historiography 

JEL codes

B25 B53 

References

  1. Anderle, O. M. (1964). A plea for theoretical history. History and Theory, 4(1), 27–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bagby, P. (1958). Culture and history: Prolegomena to the comparative study of Civilzations. London and Toronto: Longmans, Green & Company.Google Scholar
  3. Beer, S. H. (1963). Causal explanation and imaginative re-enactment. History and Theory, 3(1), 6–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Briggs, A. (1959). Book review. The Economic Journal, 69(276), 770–772.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cohen, J. (1952). Philosophical surveys, V: A survey of work in the philosophy of history, 1946-1950. The Philosophical Quartlery, 2(7), 172–186.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Croce, B. (1955) History as the story of liberty. New York: Meridian books [original 1938].Google Scholar
  7. Dow, L.A. (1958)(33) Book review. Books Abroad, 32(3), 330.Google Scholar
  8. Eller, C.A. (1959) Book review. America. New York. (march 22, 1958), pp 731-732.Google Scholar
  9. Fisher, A.G.B. (1958) Book review. International affairs (Royal Institute of International affairs 1944-) 34:4, pp 522.Google Scholar
  10. Fitzimons, M.A. (1958) Book review. American Journal of Jurisprudence 3:1 (1958), 201–205. Also published as: Fitzsimons, M. A. Natural Lal'V Forum. Notre Dame Law School. 1:1 (1958) 384.Google Scholar
  11. Gardiner, P. (Ed.). (1959). Theories of history. New York: The Free Press.Google Scholar
  12. Gallie, W. B. (1964). Philosophy and the historical understanding. New York: Schocken Books.Google Scholar
  13. Gellner, E. (1959) Holism versus individualism in history and sociology in Gardiner, P. Theories of history. London, England: The free Press, pp 488-503.Google Scholar
  14. Gilbert, F. (1965). European and American historiography in John Higham with Leonard Krieger and Felix Gilbert, history: The development of historical studies in the United States Englewood. N.J: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  15. Gottschalk, L. (1969) Understanding history: A primer of historical method. New York, Alfred a. Knopft [original 1950].Google Scholar
  16. Geraves, B.B. and McGee (1993). R.W. Mises: An Annotated Bibliography: A Comprehensive listing of books and articles by and about Ludwig von Mises. Irvington-on-Hudson,: Foundation for Economic Education.Google Scholar
  17. Hacker, L. (1957) A testament of faith in man and in his capacity for growth. The New York times book review. (December 29, 1957) 6-13.Google Scholar
  18. Hayek, F.A. (1952/1979) The counter-revolution of science: Studies on the abuse of reason. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund.Google Scholar
  19. Hexter, J.H. (1961) Reappraisals in history. London: Longman, green, & co.; Chicago: Northwestern Univ Press.Google Scholar
  20. Hulsman, J.G. (2007) Mises: Last knight of liberalism. Ludwig von Mises Institute.Google Scholar
  21. Kade, G. (1960). Book review. Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik / Journal of Economics andStatistics, 172(5), 470–471.Google Scholar
  22. Kaufmann, F. (1961). Methodology of the social sciences. Econometrica, 29(1), 100–101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Krieger, L. (1960). The uses of Marx for history. Political Science Quartlery, 75, 356–357.Google Scholar
  24. Locke, R. R. (1975). What Marxism means to an American historian. Pacific Historical Review, 44(2), 147–170.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Lane, F. C. (1959). Book review. The economic history review. New Series, 11(3), 550–552.Google Scholar
  26. Liebel, H. P. (1964). Philosophical. Idealism in the Historische Zeitschrift, 1859–1914 in History and Theory, 3(3), 316–330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Lubasz, H. (1963). Book review. History and Theory, 3(1), 3–5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Malin, J. C. (1954). On the nature of history. Ann Arbor, MI: J.W. Edwards.Google Scholar
  29. Meyerhoff, H. (1959). The philosophy of history in our time. Garden City, New York: Doubleday Anchor.Google Scholar
  30. Mises, L.v. (2007) Theory and History. Ludwig von Mises Institute (Original 1957).Google Scholar
  31. Mises, L.v. (1933/2003) Epistemolgocal Problems of Economics (Auburn, Alabama: Luwdig von Mises Institute, 2003), 111. first edition in German: Grundprobleme der Nationalokonomie: Untersuchungen uber Verfahren, Aufgaben und Inhalt der Wirtschafts- und Gesellschaftslehre (1933).Google Scholar
  32. Norris, J. (1959). Book Review. The Canadian Historical Review, 40(1959), 154–155.Google Scholar
  33. Novick, P. (1988). That Noble dream: The “objectivity question” and the American historical profession. Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Pollard, S. (1965). Economic history – A science of society? Past & Present, 30, 3–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Popper, K. (1957). The Poverty of historicism. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  36. Puster, R.W. (2015) “Dualismen und ihre Hintergründe: Eine Hinführung zu Ludwig von Mises’s <<Theorie und Geschichte>> “ in Ludwig von Mises, Theorie und Geschichte. Eine Interpretation sozialer under wirtschaftlichter Entwicklung. Ludwig von Mises Institut Deutschland: H. Akston Verlag.Google Scholar
  37. Schaff, A. (1976) History and truth, (Pergamon, 1976) (translated from polishGoogle Scholar
  38. Selgin, G. A. (1988). Praxeology and understanding: An analysis of the controversy in Austrian economics. The Review of Austrian Economics, 2(1), 19–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sorenson, L. R. (1955). Historical currents in America. American Quarterly, 7(3), 234–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Richter, S. (2009). Gert Bastian – Seitenwechsel fur den Friende? In R. Lorenz & M. Micus (Eds.), Seitensteiger: Unkonventioneele Politiker-Karrieren in der Parteiendemokratie (pp. 410–430). Verlag fur Sozialwissenschaften: Wisebaden, German.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Rothbard, M. (1957). In defense of extreme Apriorism. Southern Eonomic Journal, 23(3), 314–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Udehn, L. (2001). Methodlogical individualism: Background, history and meaning. Routledge.Google Scholar
  43. Walsh, W. H. (1951). An introduction to philosophy of history. London: Hutchinson House.Google Scholar
  44. Wehler, H.U. (1972) Geschichte und Soziologie. Koln.Google Scholar
  45. Zeman, S. C. (1998). Historian Louis M. Hacker’s “coincidental conversion” to the truth. The Historian, 61(1), 85–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Georgetown Institute for the Study of Markets and Ethics, McDonough School of BusinessGeorgetown UniversityBloomeryUSA

Personalised recommendations