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De l’économie de la pénurie à l’économie politique du communisme. Sur l’évolution récente de la pensée économique de Janos Kornai : 1980-1996

Vahabi, Mehrdad (1997): De l’économie de la pénurie à l’économie politique du communisme. Sur l’évolution récente de la pensée économique de Janos Kornai : 1980-1996. Published in: Revue d'Economie Politique , Vol. 107, No. 6 (December 1997): pp. 831-852.

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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to analyse the genesis and the evolution of the econom­ ics of shortage in Janos Kornai's writings from 1980 (the date of publication of Economics of Shortage) up to 1996 (the date of publication of the trench edition of The Socialist System, the Political Economy of Communism [1992/). The formation and the evolution of Budapest school of economics in general and that of J. Kornai in particular reflect the successive stages of reform movement in the Soviet type societies. Thenceforth, the writings of Kornai ruminating upon a general swing spreading all over Poland, Hungary, and Checkoslovakia can be considered as the intellectual preparation to the recent revolutions in Eastern countries. The theory of shortage, explicating the shortage as the normal state of socialist system, is based on an institutional approach. In this framework, the shortage is captured, in the last analysis, as the outcome of deep institutional causes such as paternalism, the predominance of state property, the undivided power of communist party, and its official ideology. Thence, the end of shortage economy has to be viewed as the main achievement of the post-socialist transition.

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