History of economics tweetstorms: an index

Over the past 2 years, I have written some tweetstorms or threads on such and such history of economics topics. I used to list them on an apps that has recently closed, so here is a list (click on pictures or the links and scroll down to read the whole thread).

I sometimes write tweetstorms to articulate some ideas or test the narrative structure of a paper that I’m writing, or to draw attention to a paper or a book I enjoyed, or more often, to bundle a series of pieces by historians of economics. These tweetstorms are therefore often filled with links to seminal work by economists and to recent contributions by historians, and can be used as reading lists.

Teaching the History of Economics through debates (a series)

The syllabus and some thoughts on a history of economics course I taught in the Spring of 2019 are here, but here’s the list of the five questions economists (and students) have long debated:

  1. Is Economics too mathematized (tweetstorm)
  2. Theory or data first? (tweetstorm)
  3. Are economic agent rational? (tweetstorm)
  4. Should economic models be realistic?(tweestorm)
  5. Is economics ideological? (tweetstorm)

Economic fields and research programs

A History of urban economics (based on an article I wrote with Anthony Rebours)

A history of environmental economics

On the uses of contingent valuation in the Exxon-Valdez case:

A socio-history of climate Economics (based on a recent dissertation by Pauline Huet)

Economists petitioning for climate

On the field of Agricultural Economics (with tons of reading suggestions in the comments)


Economics science, expertise, and ideology

How economists have discussed ideology throughout the XXth century

Is economics a science? (and is it a good question?)


Histories of tools & data

A history of the mathematization of economics

A history of econometrics and empirical economics

two reading lists on the making of economic facts (see also this blogpost)

One with a lot of suggestions in the comments:

And a second one here:


Histories of theories

Time for some game theory!

A century of economics and engineering at Stanford (based on this paper with Aurélien Saïdi)


Histories of Macroeconomics

The Legacy of Lucas’s 1972 paper “Expectations and the Neutrality of Money”

The Lucas Critique weaponized

A history of economic analysis at the Bank of England

A history of economic analysis at the Fed (based on a paper with Juan Acosta)

The making and dissemination of Milton Friedman’s 1968 presidential address, which introduced the idea of a natural rate of unemployment (based on a post with Aurélien Goutsmedt)

History of rational expectations reading list

Minneapolis Fed presidents and the macroeconomists who advised them


The wild lives of economists

The most exhilarating life I know is that or Japanese growth theorist Hiro Uzawa

The most inscrutable economist is Kenneth Arrow

Few know, however, that Arrow had a rough start. Completing his dissertation was a tough process

How Frank Hahn viewed the future of economics in 1991

On the relationship between Solow and Robinson

Friedman’s view of the future of economics in 1991

and his methodological legacy

Samuelson’s undergraduate years at Chicago (based on the first chapters of Roger Backhouse’s biography)

A few references on Thomas Schelling,

On William Baumol’s vision of science


Women in economics

On Marion Crawfurd, Paul Samuelson’s wife

Was Samuelson sexist?

The issue was so tricky and interesting that Roger Backhouse and I wrote a whole paper on the topic. Here’s a tweetstorm summarizing our arguments.

I have tweetstormed a lot about economics’ current gender reckoning (the seed in the summer of 2017, the rise at ASSA 2018, taking stock at ASSA 2019 ), and as well as about the (largely forgotten) first gender reckoning that female economists launched in the 1970s.

This tweetstorm has become a blog post

as well as this recent one on economists petitioning in favor of the Equal Rights Amendment at ASSA Atlanta in 1979 (blog with Cleo Chassonnery-Zaigouche and John Singleton)



A history of the John Bates Clark medal (based on this paper with Andrej Svorencik)

Samuelson on Nobels

On the history of peer-reviewing (in science and economics)

What economists would learn should they publish history of economic pieces in their journal anniversary issues


Why 1952 is the most important year in the history of economics:

On the origins of the French tradition of inequality and public economic research


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