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Dr Miriam Bankovsky Senior Lecturer, Politics

Miriam Bankovsky is a Senior Lecturer and director of the Bachelor of Politics, Philosophy and Economics. She received the 2017 Australasian Association of Philosophy’s Annette Baier Prize for her work on economic envy.

She is now writing a book manuscript entitled The Family, Economics and Ethics: An Unorthodox History, following the completion of her Australian Research Council DECRA fellowship. This book tells an as yet untold story about how market-paradigm economists have historically conceptualised the family's role in the economy, focusing on three different types of theory. These include the nineteenth century production-focused theories of Alfred Marshall, Jevons, the French Spiritualists, Walras and Pareto; the interwar consumer-oriented theories of Hazel Kyrk, Elizabeth Hoyt and Margaret Reid; and the economic rationality approaches of the New Household Economics (including, among others, Gary Becker). The book explains, first, how the analytical focus and ethical concepts of social good that animated market-paradigm family economics changed over time to respond to specific historical problems (advancing industrialisation, the "social question" and population debates, the domestic void and consumer culture, and accelerating individualisation). The book also explores, second, how these theoretical constructs have both facilitated and constrained the analysis of family behaviour. The history reveals the close intersection between theory-construction in economics and broader historical concerns, opening onto a deeper question about how to define the economic problems that families face in our own times and how we might consider using analysis to respond.

Before this, Miriam completed a French-Australian Cotutelle PhD in political philosophy on competing conceptions of justice within a broadly Kantian tradition, publishing Perfecting Justice in Rawls, Habermas and Honneth: A Deconstructive Perspective (Hardback Continuum 2012, Paperback Bloomsbury 2013), and two collections (co-edited with Dr Alice Le Goff, University of Paris V) on recognition theory and contemporary French philosophy (Manchester UP 2012, and CNRS Editions Alpha, Paris 2012).

With these plural but overlapping interests, she has published in journals affiliated with very different disciplines and sub-disciplines, including Cambridge Journal of Economics, History of Political Economy, Journal of Applied Philosophy, Philosophy & Social Criticism, Philosophy Today, and the Australian Journal of Political Science.

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