Background and Significance of Economic Science: The Special, the Sublime, the Climax
The existence of the universe is something extraordinary!
The countless conjectures (mainly scientific) on the intrinsic characteristics of the universe and also the attempts to understand it have followed the history of mankind. This direction has been the role of Physical Science (prominently, but also chemistry) the "lady" of understanding the laws and forces that comprise the cosmos.
It is certainly difficult (even for a physical specialist of high cognitive capacity) to have a total understanding of the universe. There are many variables involved in attempts to 'discover' the physical universe and therefore, many theories about the creation, composition, purpose and development of the cosmos have been developed (and many are still in development). Concerning that, The Theory of Relativity (Albert Einstein); studies on Celestial Mechanics (Isaac Newton), the ideas of quantum mechanics (Planck and others) and, more recently, the development of the concept of the Inflationary Universe (Alan Guth) should be remembered.
But, in spite of the extraordinary, the 'bodies' that make up the universe are inert. Planets, satellites, chemicals, etc. and are important parts and constituents of the universe (studied by physics and chemistry) and are (all) "non-living."
The universe is extraordinary. However, sublime is life!
As a result of the physical understanding of the universe, one can say (infer and understand) that the laws and natural forces have created something very sublime: life.
Life, as a result of the behavior of the universe ('the daughter of his bowels'), is so complex and sublime that even its definition (and of course also your understanding) is difficult. The emergence of life gave rise, in turn, to a scientific area, mainly intended for our understanding - Biology (here also with the company of Chemistry - in its organic version).
Also in this harvest (that is life) there were many thinkers, theories and scholars. These stand out, among others: Hippocrates (and the studies on human medicine), Charles Darwin (and the notion of the evolution of the species); Gottfried Reinhold Treviranus, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, Karl Friedrich Burdach and Michael Christoph Hanover (who introduced, one way or another, biological studies in its different forms).
However, once more you can get enthralled by the wonder, beauty and lightness of the life of a plant, animal or any other organism. One has to realize that they all are "devoid of reason." They are all incapable of understanding cognitive perception and rational analysis.
On the other side, the apex of the development of life is the human being! The human being is at the top of the 'pyramid evolution of the universe' and is the greatest symbol of rationality, prominently scientific / methodological.
Human beings, in their attempt to survive in the physical universe, discovered and "discovers" physical, biological and chemical laws. But the same process of relationship between humans, nature and production of goods that would quench the human needs, discovers and develops the only science that has as its fundamental goal understanding the human being truly human: "the rational man in his economic productive process." This angular science is the Science of Economics.
Incidentally, the Economic Science method of investigation (as the right of all sciences) is the result and reflection of the actual relations between 'the object and the researcher'. In this direction, the objectives of the theorems governing economic laws are the fruits of economic logic (whether materialist dialectics or marginalist / individualist). Here (in Economic Science), there is no room for "empty talk."
Thus, the economic results can only be "doubted" or discussed from their genesis (its axioms). There are no spaces (the 'body' of the various aspects of Economic Science) for "ithinks" inconsistency or emotion without reason. Furthermore, it must be remembered that the number of variables to consider in the economy is "astronomical." The cosmic complexity is certainly less than the economic complexity.
So if one part of physics is the science of the universe (extraordinary) and biology is the science of life (sublime), on the other hand, Economic Science is the science of the most extraordinary, sublime and rational species that have flourished (and which are known): Economic Science is the science of human beings!
Thus, attempts to understand the rational / economic / productive behavior of the human being (the basis of the study of Economic Science) healthy studies, the actual 'pinnacle of evolution of the real world." A science so important, one must wonder, feel awe, and of course attempt, at all times, the enlargement of its boundaries (say, the expansion of the frontiers of knowledge about human beings - the only being alive able to perceive, understand and modify the universe that surrounds the 'whole totality ').
All aspects of Economic Science (Neoclassical, Marxist, Keynesian, Schumpeterian Studies, among others) play the role of historical fundamental understanding of the ways in which human beings (in the process of material production) transform 'nature' and thus transform themselves. These transformations ended up changing, keep changing and will continue to change 'the earth' (and also the understanding of the extraordinary, the sublime and the rational apex).
Text prepared by: Fred Siqueira Leite
Professor and researcher in the field of economics
Translated from the Portuguese version by: