Critique of political economy

Critique of political economy or critique of economy is a form of social critique that rejects the various social categories and structures that constitute the mainstream discourse concerning the forms and modalities of resource allocation and income distribution in the economy. The critique also rejects economists' use of what its advocates believe are unrealistic axioms, faulty historical assumptions, and the normative use of various descriptive narratives.[1] They reject what they describe as mainstream economists' tendency to posit the economy as an a priori societal category.[2][3]

Those who engage in critique of economy tend to reject the view that the economy, and its categories, is to be understood as something transhistorical.[4][5] They rather argue that it is a relatively new mode of resource distribution, which emerged along with modernity.[6][7][8] Hence, it is seen as merely one of many types of historically specific ways to distribute resources.

Critics of economy critique the given status of the economy itself, and hence don't aim to create theories regarding how to administer economies.[1][3][9][10] Critics of economy commonly view what is most commonly referred to as the economy as being bundles of metaphysical concepts, as well as societal and normative practices, rather than being the result of any "self-evident" or proclaimed "economic laws".[3][11][12] Hence they also tend to consider the views which are commonplace within the field of economics as faulty, or simply as pseudoscience.[2][13][14][15]

There are multiple critiques of political economy today, but what they have in common is critique of what critics of political economy tend to view as dogma, i.e. claims of "the economy" as a necessary and transhistorical societal category.[3][16]


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