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The virtual reality of the invisible hand

Published in Social Science Information. 2016, vol. 55, no. 1, p. 115-134
Abstract Self-centred based explanations such as invisible-hand accounts look like armchair constructions with no relevance to the real world. Whether and how they nonetheless provide an insight into social reality is a puzzling matter. Philip Pettit’s idea of self- interest virtually bearing on choices offers the prospect of a solution. In order to assess the latter we first distinguish between three variants of invisible-hand explanations, namely: a normative, an historical and a theoretical one. We then show that, while the model of virtual self-interest is a helpful gloss on each variant, it may not convincingly succeed, pace Pettit, in reconciling the economic mind with the common mind.
Keywords Carl MengerInvisible-hand explanationPhilip PettitResilienceSelf-interest
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Research group Thumos
Projects FNS: PMPDP1_145534
FNS: PMPDP1_145534
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DAYER-TIEFFENBACH, Emma. The virtual reality of the invisible hand. In: Social Science Information, 2016, vol. 55, n° 1, p. 115-134. https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:97605

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Deposited on : 2017-10-11

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