Science of Human Action Essay

5931 Words Nov 18th, 2014 24 Pages
The Science of Human Action By L. M. LACHMANN

Praxeology meaning - the study of human action and conduct

Praxeology is the deductive study of human action based on the fact that humans engage in purposeful behavior, as opposed to reflexive behavior like sneezing and inanimate behavior. According to adherents, with the action axiom as the starting point, it is possible to draw conclusions about human behavior that are both objective and universal. For example, the notion that humans engage in acts of choice implies that they have preferences, and this must be true for anyone who exhibits intentional behavior.
The most common use of the term is in connection with the Austrian School of Economics, as established by economist Ludwig
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To render justice to a work of this nature on the few pages at our disposal is clearly impossible. All we -can hope to do is to select a few topics for discussion.
When ten years ago Professor Knight reviewed the original German version of the book in this journal and found himself faced with the same dilemma, he selected one topic only for discussion, viz., the theory of capital. Quite possibly this is the best way of going about it. Undoubtedly, the theory of capital occupies a prominent place in Professor Mises' doctrinal edifice. His theory of the trade cycle as well as his proof of the inadequacy of some recent “models “for a socialist market economy depend largely on his view of capital.
Yet we shall not follow the method Professor Knight adopted ten years ago. Unable though we are to take the reader on an extensive tour of the palace and to show him every part of the building, it seems to us wrong to confine our inspection to the basement. The wide vistas to be gained from some of the windows on the upper floors are too enchanting for that.

Human Action is, of course, far more than a treatise on the methodology of the social sciences. However, its center of gravity certainly lies in its first seven chapters, which are devoted to the discussion of method in the social sciences. We shall therefore have to deal at some length with the issues

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