Phillip W. Magness

U.S. Economic & Political History

Euphemizing Eugenics

| September 11, 2018

The involvement of the early 20th century Progressive Movement with the racial pseudo-science of eugenics has only recently begun to receive a thorough and appropriately critical historical treatment. The reason for this late treatment likely derives from a polite reluctance to engage an ethical blot on the careers of several celebrated scholars and political figures […]

Eugenics and the Origins of the AAUP

| January 13, 2018

The history behind the founding of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) almost always begins with the case of Edward A. Ross. A prominent economist and sociologist in his day, Ross was forced to resign from his faculty position at Stanford University in November 1900 after running afoul of the political views of the […]

Illiberal Reviewers

| September 13, 2017

The Journal of Economic Literature (JEL), a well-regarded academic journal that covers research trends and practices in the profession, published an extremely unusual and in many ways problematic review article in its September 2017 issue. It’s behind a paywall, but if you have access to the AEA website you can view it here. The article […]

On Keynes and Eugenics

| April 25, 2017

My article with Sean J. Hernandez on the “Economic Eugenicism of John Maynard Keynes” is now available at SSRN. This article should be approached as a synthesis of the role that eugenics played across Keynes’ career and in the formation of his economic theories. It is also the proverbial tip of the iceberg as far […]

When Mises met Keynes

| June 5, 2016

On June 23, 1926 John Maynard Keynes delivered an unusual economics lecture at the University of Berlin. This event has gone almost completely unnoticed by Keynes’ principle biographers despite what would seem to be a historically significant product. A few months after the event, Keynes heavily edited the Berlin lecture into his well known essay, “The End of Laissez-Faire.” […]