A rational transition: Economic experts and the construction of post-communist Slovenia
Marcus, George E.
Doctor of Philosophy
Based on research conducted over a twenty-four month period in Ljubljana, Slovenia, this dissertation provides an ethnographic study of the role of economists in charting Slovenia's transition process. The project argues that economics as a science is not homogeneous across cultures but that its history and implementation are contingent upon the position of its producers. It examines the practices of economists and the roots of their cultural authority which allows them to occupy influential positions beyond the technical confines of a community of specialized knowledge. The chapters trace the relationship between the history of economics as a discipline and the events that led to Slovenia's process of independence. They focus particularly on the emergence of depoliticized economic discourse as a legitimate critical strategy and track the way that this continued neutralization informed Slovenia's broader processes of change. Finally, this study questions the naturalness of the concept of transition presumed by the depoliticization of economic discourse through an analysis of discourses that contest or subvert it.
Slavic literature; East European literature; Cultural anthropology; Economics; History of science