History of Economics Playground

A blog by young and restless (and good looking) historians of economics

@INET-BW: Name Dropping and communists before INET starts

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The INET conference is not intimidating at all. It’s 8.20am, the conference has not started, we are getting on a bus to Bretton Woods from Boston, and next to me are Ha-Joon Chang and Robert Skidelsky discussing structural deficits, while Fitoussi is in front of me after we finished a quick chat about welfare measurement. Bad morning to miss coffee. Two and a half hour later we’ve not only reached Bretton Woods but I’ve reached some new ideas and debates.

Lunch got even better, at the table with Skidelsky, Christian Wigstrom (on the INET curriculum board), Richard Brock, John Kay and Duncan Foley… And the name dropping has become silly by the time we’d made it to dinner. Haven’t made an ass of myself, which is always nice. At this point the conference is yet to start. From that I have a host of things, but for now, the best quote of the day about the 1944 US Treasury chief negotiator at Bretton Woods in 1944: “This is an overstatement, but, Harry Dexter White was a communist.”  –Larry Summers, 8 April 2011. That followed a very warm recollection of Mr. White by the IMF Historian… Lovely

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Written by Benjamin

9 April 2011 at 3:06 am

Posted in Economics, Our profession

Tagged with ,

One Response

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  1. On H. White and communism, see here (there’s a section devoted to this if yous scroll down):

    http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2006/09/an_insiders_vie.html

    It’s from a colleague who was here at Bretton Woods (as the post notes, Ray passed away a few years ago he was the second to last survivor from the meetings).

    Mark

    Mark Thoma

    9 April 2011 at 3:21 am


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