I don\’t know the answer to this

It was built on the political logic of John Maynard Keynes. Keynes was a Cambridge professor of economics and a former civil servant.

Was he? A Professor of Economics I mean.

I know he was a Lecturer in economics, a Fellow (of Kings?) and so on. But did he ever actually hold a chair in economics? Anyone know?

17 thoughts on “I don\’t know the answer to this”

  1. He never held the rank of Professor but it may be OK to refer to him as a professor with a small p, depending on the context. Link?

  2. I note Keynes isn’t described as an Old Etonian. Though I suspect Mr Murphy will drop the Etonian tag in on Tories he dislikes.

  3. Ah I see, it’s Murph, so ‘professor’ is not excusable, as it would be if he were an American writing for a US audience. Understandable, though, since what he knows about Keynes seems to be taken from the recent writings of Paul Davidson.

  4. Keynes was a Lecturer, the posts salary being paid by A. C. Pigou (the actual Professor at the time) and Neville Keynes.

  5. From the link:

    “He then took up a post lecturing in economics at Cambridge.” That doesn’t make clear whether he had a University Lectureship or a College Lectureship.

    “As a Cambridge tutor, Keynes often met and taught Indian students.” But then “tutor” isn’t a teaching job at Cambridge, though it is at Oxford and many other places.

    It may be impossible briefly to explain to readers what they might like to know while sticking to Cambridge jargon.

    Not long ago Tyler Cowen worked himself up to a fit of pique based, if I remember rightly, on the assumption that the title Professor came as cheap in Britain as it did in the US.

  6. P.S. I’ve always assumed that he had been a University Lecturer in Economics; he was certainly a Fellow of King’s. He wasn’t a Professor.

  7. Wot larks: if you go to the King’s College webpage and click on alumni. you’ll see that they are still boasting of “Johann Hari, journalist”. Not what they were, King’s.

  8. Peter Clarke’s biography says when called “professor” he would say “I will not accept the indignity without the emoluments”

  9. A Canadian friend of mine got in trouble for calling his Professor “Doctor” and had to explain that where he came from, the title “professor” was virtually meaningless.

    See for example Robert Frank, “professor” of economics at Cornell, who recently spoke at the LSE saying “There are a certain number of deals to be done, and they’ll get done regardless of how many people are employed in the financial sector.” WTF. Also when I spoke to him afterwards he wouldn’t accept that a “consumption” (ie. expenditure) tax that didn’t exempt investment income would *encourage* consumption rather than discouraging it.

  10. This all a bit depressing: I’d always assumed Keynes did n’t study much Economics and had a somewhat sketchy academic background in the subject.This makes him more interesting IMO.
    Wikipedia tends to confirm this impression:He studied Maths until he graduated ,then he studied philosophy and “attended Economics lectures informally as a graduate student”.He was privately funded by his Dad and Pigou.His first lectureship was privately funded by Marshall. Not the way things are done nowadays.

  11. No no no, Simms… It’s “Professor Emeritus of Accountancy and NUMBER ONE ECONOMICS BLOGGER IN TEH WORLD UK”.

    Back to the false hagiography class for you!

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