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An Engine, Not a Camera: How Financial Models Shape Markets
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An Engine, Not a Camera: How Financial Models Shape Markets

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  101 ratings  ·  4 reviews
In An Engine, Not a Camera, Donald MacKenzie argues that the emergence of modern economic theories of finance affected financial markets in fundamental ways. These new, Nobel Prize-winning theories, based on elegant mathematical models of markets, were not simply external analyses but intrinsic parts of economic processes.

Paraphrasing Milton Friedman, MacKenzie says t
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Hardcover, 377 pages
Published April 14th 2006 by MIT Press (MA)
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Sarah
Jul 06, 2007 rated it really liked it
In many ways I've modeled my dissertation after this book. It's contemporary economic sociology at its best, I think.
Stanisław
Jan 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
A lot of economic sociology tends to lament the mathematization of economics without really assessing the usefulness of math applied and to dismiss its models on the grounds of its unrealistic assumptions, shouting with a revelatory passion that the homo economicus does not really exist (you don't say), juxtaposing the rigid, rational worlds of economics and "irrational" embeddedness of the social.

In contrast, MacKenzie goes to great length to understand the models, which history he's discussin
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John Farr
Mar 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderfully informative book on the history and sociology of financial theory. The author shows a great command of the subject matter, which I found impressive as he is a sociologist by training.

The big idea of this book is that the models that financial theorists introduce to their MBA students (Black-Scholes, CAPM, etc.) end up impacting the prices of the very securities that they are supposed to value. In this way, finance practitioners mistake these models as being a "camera" that
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Taylor
Feb 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
a canonical, must-read in the social studies of finance.
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