Economics and the Good Life: Keynes and Schumacher

Victoria Chick


It is, I think, interesting to compare the views of E. F. Schumacher and J. M. Keynes on the ethical aspects of economics – both the economic systems of which they were a part and economics as a subject. Both agreed that economics (as commonly understood and taught) applied to only a limited sphere of life. They agreed about the role of profits, the market and the love of money. And they both believed that there was much more to life than getting and spending. For Keynes, economic activity was the means to bring society to a position where the good life could be enjoyed. Schumacher was even more ambitious: he thought economic activity should be made part of the good life.

Published on 26th October, 2013, in Economic Thought Vol 2, No 2, 2013