ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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What EPW Means to Me

Veteran political economist Amiya Kumar Bagchi (amiya.bagchi@gmail.com) looks back on a long association with Economic Weekly and Economic and Political Weekly, which contributed to his intellectual development, made him a member of the EPW subfamily and resulted in friendships that he still cherishes.

Let me first state that in order to talk about Economic & Political Weekly’s (EPW) contribution to my intellectual development and to public debates in India, it is necessary to go back to its predecessor, the Economic Weekly (EW from now on). There was a sharp break in management from EW to EPW, but there was no break in the nature of the journal. EW was a unique journal globally, combining current news and comments on politics and economics with serious academic articles on economics, political science and sociology. EPW has retained that character, although it has broadened its scope, taking in labour studies, gender studies, political economy, and so on.

When I was studying economics in Presidency College and Calcutta University, our teachers encouraged us to read EW regularly. We followed a debate on the choice of techniques in an underdeveloped economy in its pages. There was another debate on the meaning and implications of the Mahalanobis model. There were debates on the meaning and measurement of national income in an economy in which a large part of the output did not go through the market directly. For students whose bent lay that way, there were serious papers on the nature of Indian society. Foreign as well as Indian scholars took part in these debates. It would be invidious to name particular scholars: it is enough to note that at least three of them went on to win the Swedish Bank Prize (better, but misleadingly known as the Nobel Prize) in economics. There were other equally eminent economists who contributed to EW but who did not win the Swedish Bank Prize because of their political views.

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Updated On : 19th Aug, 2017
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