Mid-Term Quiz

This is a self-administered exam to be completed in 1.5 hours of continuous time. This exam is closed book.

It is largely for your own benefit, designed to give you some idea of what the final exam will look like and some practice in how to answer the kinds of questions that will be asked there. You will get the most benefit from it if you take it in continuous time and do not look at the questions in advance.

Take time to think out and outline your answer before you begin writing.

Answer Part I and any two (but only two) of the three questions in Part II. Part I and the two questions you answer in Part II will be equally weighted.

Part I. Briefly identify and explain the significance of:

  1. Methodological Individualism
  2. Alienation
  3. Altruism vs. Egoism
  4. Scientific Revolution
  5. Class Conflict

Part II: Choose 2 of the 3 following topics:

  1. Does private property enhance freedom or diminish it? Milton Friedman and Karl Marx reach diametrically opposed views on this question. Explain how this divergence occurs. Is it due to differences in their definition of property, of freedom or of the nature of capitalism itself?
  2. What is the meaning of "capitalism" as used in the title of this course and in the works by Milton Friedman and by Karl Marx assigned in this course. Other authors use the term as well. Does the meaning vary systematically among the different paradigms or is the variation among the authors we have read in the class idiosyncratic? Two key concepts which are often related to capitalism are private property and the market. How does the role assigned to property and the market vary and how is that connected to the definition of capitalism?
  3. Can you have capitalism in all times and all places? Compare and contrast the answers to this question which are offered by Marxists and liberal-neoclassical economists. Does the answer vary within a given paradigm? For example, would Milton Friedman and Gary Becker agree?