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Theoretical and Applied Economics
No. 5 / 2008 (522)

The Crisis of the Part

„Everything within the unconscious wants to become an event,
and personality too wants to evolve,
coming out of its unconscious conditions, and living itself as a whole”
C.G. Jung

The attachment of universitarians to the ideas sufficient to specialization constitutes the syndrome to a crisis. It is the crisis of the fragmentation of knowledge in the decadent phase of modernity.

For sure, it is not just them suffering from contamination.

The symptoms are visible generally among the intellectuals. The superficial analyses, mostly textualist, lodged in details - often irrelevant to the context, the pretentious formalism which obscures the essential through the obsession for simplification are the characteristics of the malady called postmodernism.

For the universitarians the crisis has a hard to spot effect: one way or the other it will transfer from generation to generation. Not being a one-phase crisis, it can take place in successive waves, reproduce at the level of the structures of thought generation after generation. Otherwise, it is not at all a fluke that postmodernism is being perceived as a crisis which has already been lasting for at least half a century. Which means that the horizon of generational expectations has been exceeded around three times. The fixation in comfortableness, the shape which the crisis takes as viewed among universitarians, is very little discussed due to the assumption that it would pertain to the intellectual standards specific to the academic environment. Unfortunately, the dissimulation in tradition of the postmodernist crisis of higher education appropriates to itself for resistance sectarian theoretical constructions of the type of the utilitarian performance of narrow specialization. In fact, the complicated part of the crisis lies in the unilateralization of intellectual formation to the apocalyptic stage of incapacity of verbal communication. The transmission of the crisis virus to the students was done, for instance, through the generalization of the multiplechoice tests as a means of examining their knowledge. The horror did not go its course in relation to reducing the ability for communication, but there can already be seen failures with regard to socialization, through the multiplying deviant attitudes with regard to learning.

The most counter-productive part of the interval of universitarian comfortableness is the depleting of human resources in fundamental research. The pendant of this failure is the mimicking of research, the invariable application of preformed analysis schemes to isolated cases, the copying of solutions from one case to the next. The recoil of learning precedes the knowledge crisis. The illusion of performance through the exclusive focusing on detail and the quantitative in research sustains the comfort of the analysis, but annuls the satisfaction of synthesis. We are geniuses for making the detail measurable and retards for understanding the context. The danger could be, if everything lasts, of death to the relevance of research. In economics, both quantitative and qualitative models are relevant. For the economies of scale and everything that supposes macroeconomic analysis, using only quantitative models leads to conclusions which are sufficient only to themselves, and not to the good going of reality. In an order of prevalence, the explicative models for macroeconomic analysis carry a greater weight in legitimizing solutions. At this level of complexity however, quantitative models give approximative information, somewhat distorted by not measuring the effects of many factors. Approximation remains the only possibility of reaching the truth, which means the interpretation of data in the context defined by the referentials of an aggregate economic theory.

This truth is not respected where it is not known. For things are not different in the economic university environment where the sufficiency of quantitative approaches are functioning, as well as the econometric-type models which in an absolute way make abstraction of the explicative model and the theoretical fundaments adequate to the need of explaining the pursuit of one solution or the other. Today it is obvious, for those who are serious and wish to see, the huge need for explicative models for the post-communist transitive models of integrative nature, mostly for the behavior of emerging economies. The perception that in reality distortions are spotted, is supported right by the feeble preoccupation for the explicative models, on which strategies of change should be built. A strange aspect of the situation is that there is an active belief in the existence of two parties: one correct, which works with quantitative instruments which it considers a value in themselves, and another, unpopular because it stubbornly continues to propose explicative models as if doing it for declaring quantitative models useless. It looks like a conflict, though it is more likely about an understanding founded - on both sides - on sufficiency. The parties, although formally and noisily refute each other, are in essence complementary. The collaboration between parties could be an alternative for coming out of the crisis. Another way, maybe more substantial, would be for both parties to complete their spiritual horizon with both perspectives on the approach, especially to serve knowledge in a durable way and to appease their egos constructively.

... Qui suiipsius spiritus tam multa devorat ...


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The Crisis of the Part
Marin Dinu

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The Economicity. The Epistemic Landscape, Marin Dinu, 2016

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