Neoclassical Theory and the Teaching of Undergraduate Microeconomics

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South African Journal of Economics, 76(4), December 2008, pages 749-764
Mario Scerri
ISSN: 1813-6982

This paper explores possible reasons for the long and enduring dominance of neoclassical theory over the undergraduate microeconomics textbook. It proposes that those very attributes of neoclassical microeconomics that raise serious theoretical misgivings constitute the basis for the current hegemony of the standard undergraduate textbook. It further discusses the effects of the standard text on the education of economists in developing countries and conditions of the entrenchment of this text in undergraduate teaching. Finally, it looks at the possibilities of the emergence of alternative textbooks both in the centre and in the periphery of the global academic map.

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