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COLLECTION Identifier: HUGFP 4.xx, HUGFP 66.xx, HUBS 276.xx

Papers of Joseph Alois Schumpeter

The Papers of Joseph Alois Schumpeter document the academic and professional career of Joseph Alois Schumpeter as a teacher, writer, and researcher from 1905 to 1982. The collection is a valuable resource for economic research particularly in the analysis of economic change and development in society. The collection also contains materials related to Schumpeter’s personal life and family. Joseph Alois Schumpeter (1883-1950), was an Austrian economist, former Minister of Finance in Austria, and George F. Baker Professor Economics at Harvard University (1935-1950).

Dates

  • circa 1905-1965, 1975, 1982

Creator

Physical Description

Extent is approximate.

Conditions on Use and Access

Restrictions may apply. Contact the Reference Staff of the Harvard University Archives for details.

Extent

48 cubic feet

The Papers of Joseph Alois Schumpeter document the academic and professional career of Joseph Alois Schumpeter as a teacher, writer, and researcher from 1905 to 1982. The collection is a valuable resource for economic research particularly in the analysis of economic change and development in society. The collection also contains materials related to Schumpeter’s personal life and family. Although the groups of material are generally well defined, there is some overlap of subject matter between series.

The Bibliography series contains correspondence, notes, a ledger book, and other records on Joseph A. Schumpeter’s library holdings, gathered by Elizabeth B. Schumpeter for the publication of her article, Bibliography of the Writings of Joseph A. Schumpeter (1950).

Biographical materials include photographs from 1900 to 1949, personal writings and notes which appear to be the beginnings of Schumpeter’s autobiography, and most of Schumpeter’s daily journal from 1931 to 1948. Also included is a typescript of an article written by Gottfried Haberler, Joseph Alois Schumpeter 1883-1950; letters of condolence relating to Schumpeter’s death; and a box of news clippings, memorials, reviews, writings, and lectures by and about Schumpeter. The photographs contain images of Schumpeter and his wives Annie and Elizabeth as well as his long-time girlfriend, Mia Stöckel.

The Personal and family life series contains Schumpeter’s correspondence with his wives Annie and Elizabeth. Also included are letters to Schumpeter from Mia Stöckel and photographs of Mia and her family.

The Papers of Elizabeth Boody Schumpeter series include her communications with publishers regarding contracts, licensing agreements, translations, and literary rights to Schumpeter’s works.

The first copy Schumpeter made of his wife’s diary from 1919 to 1926, Anna (Annie) Josefina Reisinger is in the “Annie” diary extracts in shorthand series.

The Correspondence series ranges from 1912 to 1975 and includes Schumpeter’s professional correspondence to and from other economists including Arthur Smithies and August Losch. Many of the letters include commentaries on Schumpeter’s work and economic theory. In the series is a speech given by Schumpeter on November 19, 1945 titled The Future of Private Enterprise in the Face of Modern Socialistic Tendencies, republished in History of Political Economy in 1975 (vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 293-298). Other pertinent records include memoranda, news clippings, bibliographies, and articles on economic topics.

Chronicled in the Professional organization series is Schumpeter’s association with the American Economic Association and the Econometric Society.

The Research notes series contains Schumpeter’s notes on such subjects as war economics, inflation, the gold standard, business cycles, and the early history of banking. Some of the notes are for classroom lectures and for speeches Schumpeter gave to professional organizations.

The Lecture notes [teaching] series contains Schumpeter’s lectures given at Harvard University from 1930 to 1949. Included are notes, examination books, and reading lists for such courses as the History and Literature of Economics since 1776 (Economics 113b), the Economics of Socialism (Economics 11b), the Principals of Money and Banking (Economics 141), Advanced Economic Theory (Economics 103), and Business Cycles and Economic Forecasting (Economics 245a).

The Writings and speeches series documents Schumpeter’s contributions to the field of economics chiefly from 1906 to 1950 and includes manuscripts, reports, reprints, and other publications. The wide range of topics in economic theory reflects Schumpeter’s interest over many decades. Included are notes and parts of a manuscript for Schumpeter’s Business Cycles: A Theoretical, Historical, and Statistical Analysis of the Capitalist Process (1939); Schumpeter’s manuscript on money, published posthumously in 1970 as Das Wesen des Geldes; a manuscript and notes for Schumpeter’s History of Economic Analysis (1954); and a typescript for Ten Great Economists from Marx to Keynes (1952). Also included are Schumpeter’s notes on socialism; correspondence, charts, and notes for Rudimentary Mathematics for Economists and Statisticians (1946); and Schumpeter’s notes for eight lectures he gave at Harvard University as part of the Lowell lecture series from March 4 to March 28, 1941, in which he analyses the economic, political, and social condition of the United States. Also found in this series are many of Schumpeter’s speeches, lectures, and articles related to various economic subjects including the protective tariff, the future of gold, econometrics, the state-managed economy, and capitalism.

Biographical note on Joseph Alois Schumpeter

Joseph Alois Schumpeter (1883-1950), was an Austrian economist, former Minister of Finance in Austria, and George F. Baker Professor Economics at Harvard University (1935-1950). Schumpeter was known for his work in business cycle theory, for his emphasis on the process of change and development in economic affairs, for his study of the central role of the entrepreneur as the innovator responsible for economic changes, and for his interest in the mathematical study of economic problems.

Schumpeter was born on February 8, 1883, in Triesch, Habsburg Moravia (now the Czech Republic, then part of Austria-Hungary). The son of Alois Schumpeter, a clothing manufacturer, and Joan Marguerite (Gruener), Schumpeter studied law and economics at the University of Vienna. After receiving his degree of Doctor of Law in 1906, Schumpeter spent a year researching at the London School of Economics and the British Museum. He spent the next year practicing law in Cairo, Egypt at the International Mixed Court of Egypt. Schumpeter returned to Austria in 1909, as a professor of economics at the University of Chernovtsy (present-day Chernovtsy, Ukraine). In 1911 he joined the faculty at the University of Graz, where he remained until 1918.

During World War I, Schumpeter took part in attempts to negotiate a separate peace for Austria, proposing plans for economic reconstruction. After the war, Schumpeter served for a year as finance minister in the newly-formed democratic government of Austria. He then became president of a private bank in Vienna which because of poor economic conditions and mismanagement, failed in 1924. Bankrupt, Schumpeter returned to academic life, accepting a professorship at the University of Bonn in Germany in 1925. Schumpeter visited Harvard University in 1927, 1930, and in 1932, when he accepted a permanent position at Harvard as a professor of economics. Schumpeter became a United States citizen in 1939.

Schumpeter was a prolific writer on economics. In fifteen books and pamphlets, over 200 articles, book reviews, and review articles, Schumpeter furthered the understanding of business cycles, the role of the entrepreneur, capitalist development, and the use of mathematics in economics. In his first book, The Nature and Principal Contents of Economic Theory (1908), Schumpeter attempted to introduce his German audience to the field of theoretical economics. In The Theory of Economic Development (1912), regarded as his most important work, Schumpeter argued that the entrepreneur is the key to stimulating the business cycle. Many of Schumpeter’s articles and his Business Cycles (1939) reveal his interest in statistical and econometric research. Additionally, Schumpeter’s writings on socialism, Imperialism and Social Classes (1951) and Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (1942) and on the history of economic thought, Economic Doctrine and Method (1914) and History of Economic Analysis (1954), highlight Schumpeter’s understanding of the sociological and historical forces that influence economic ideas. Within a broader social framework, Schumpeter emphasized the process of economic change and development.

Joseph Alois Schumpeter married three times: Gladys Ricarde Seaver (1907), Annie Reisinger (1925), and Elizabeth Boody Firuski (1937).

Schumpeter died on January 8, 1950.

Arrangement

The records are organized in ten series:
  1. Bibliography, [1950]
  2. Bibliographic Material, [1919-1951]
  3. Personal and Family Life, [circa 1920-1940]
  4. Papers of Elizabeth Boody Schumpeter, 1948-1960
  5. “Annie” diary extracts in shorthand, [1919-1926]
  6. Correspondence, [circa 1920s-1950s]
  7. Professional Organizations, [circa 1930s-1949]
  8. Research Notes, [circa 1905-1950]
  9. Lecture notes [teaching], 1930-1949
  10. Writings and Speeches, [circa 1906-1954, 1982]

References

  • Harvard University. Harvard University Biographical (i.e., "Quinquennial") files, 1700-. Schroeder, E.C.-Schwartz, J., Schumpeter, Joseph Alois, HUG 300, Box 887. Harvard University Archives.
  • "Joseph Alois Schumpeter." In Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. Economic History, edited by Thomas Carson and Mary Bonk. Detroit: Gale, 1999. Biography In Context (accessed October 12, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/K1667000159/BIC?u=wat
  • "Joseph Alois Schumpeter." In Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. Economic History, edited by Thomas Carson and Mary Bonk. Detroit: Gale, 1999. Biography In Context (accessed October 12, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/K1667000159/BIC?u=wat

Inventory update

This document last updated 2018 October 24.
Title
Schumpeter, Joseph Alois, 1883-1950. Papers of Joseph Alois Schumpeter : an inventory
EAD ID
hua11007

Repository Details

Part of the Harvard University Archives Repository

Holding nearly four centuries of materials, the Harvard University Archives is the principal repository for the institutional records of Harvard University and the personal archives of Harvard faculty, as well as collections related to students, alumni, Harvard-affiliates and other associated topics. The collections document the intellectual, cultural, administrative and social life of Harvard and the influence of the University as it emerged across the globe.

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