PDR

THE PAKISTAN DEVELOPMENT REVIEW 

A Tale of Two Hands’ (Presidential Address)

This may not be the “worst of times” for the discipline of development economics, but this is also not the “best of times” for it. The discipline, rocked by a kind of schizophrenia that its votaries appear to be suffering from, is undergoing a painful, though not necessarily a Kafkaesque, metamorphosis. The consensus of the decades of the Fifties and Sixties about the nature and legitimacy of the discipline and about its ‘world-view’ has been seriously strained – indeed, according to some ‘observers’, already broken down. While the defenders of the faith [27; 36; 48] refuse to surrender, some of its erstwhile votaries [11] wish to force on the discipline a Carthaginian peace. And the dissenters [3; 24] have subjected its predictions and prescriptions to the “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.”

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