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Piero Sraffa at the university of Cambridge *

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This paper reconstructs the academic figure of Sraffa at the University of Cambridge as it emerges from his papers, his correspondence with the economists with whom he had special relations, and the official documents of the University, in particular in connection with his role in the Faculty of Economics and Politics, to which he belonged from 1927 to 1965. It presents a detailed examination of the various posts held by Sraffa at the University as Lecturer, Assistant Director of Research, Member of the Degree Committee, Examiner, Member of the Faculty Board, as co-founder of The Department of Applied Economics, Elector to the Chairs of Political Economy, Industrial Relations and Economics, Member of King's College and finally as Fellow of Trinity College. Moreover, the relationship with his fellow economists in Cambridge, in particular Keynes, Kahn, Kaldor and Joan Robinson is also examined and assessed. The broad conclusion of the paper is that Sraffa's relationship with Cambridge University was complex, contradictory and intense, and should be seen within the broader context of the ambiguous relations Sraffa had with academia in general.
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Keywords: Joan Robinson; Kahn; Keynes; Sraffa; University of Cambridge; correspondence

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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