There are two elements of Hayek's background that justify our considering him an Austrian economist: first, that he was raised and went to university in Vienna in the first three decades of the twentieth century, and second, that when he finally decided on economics as his field of study, he was trained within the Austrian tradition in economics.
Historians are concerned with events which can be assigned to specific timespace locations, events which are (or were) in principle observable or perceivable, whereas imaginative writers – poets, novelists, playwrights – are concerned with both these kinds of events and imagined, hypothetical, or invented ones.
Endless discussions of multiculturalism proceed from the unsubstantiated assumption that numerous distinct cultures constitute American society. Only a few historians or observers even consider the possibility that the opposite may be true: that the world and the United States are relentlessly becoming more culturally uniform, not diverse.
Before the eighteenth century the demographic impact of the profession of medicine remained negligible. Relatively few persons could afford to pay a doctor for his often very expensive services; and for every case in which the doctor's attendance really made a difference between life and death, there were other instances in which even the best available professional services made little difference to the course of the disease, or actually hindered recovery.... Only with the eighteenth century did the situation begin to change; and it was not until after 1850 or so that the practice of medicine and the organization of medical services begin to make large-scale differences in human survival rates and population growth.
Part of the power of Emerson's individualism is his insistence, at crucial moments, that individualism does not mean isolation or self-sufficiency. This is not a paradox, for it is only the strong individual who can frankly concede the sometimes surprising extent of his own dependence.
I think that in the emergency situations like we have with potentially weapons of mass destruction, the agent in the field needs as much flexibility as he can and the decision of probable cause as to what's going to occur needs to be made not in headquarters and not by the attorney general and not by a special court in Washington, but by the agent in the field who needs to respond immediately.
If we look at the parpens piled up on the building site or at the block of bronze, nothing about them manifests that they are suited to being a house or a statue.... Aristotle speaks of the materials considered as such in terms of "the buildable" (I, 201a 16, b Bf), coining an adjective whose suffix expresses capacity (what he calls dunamis). This capacity, as we have seen, cannot be grasped after the manner of that with which perception provides us (color, hardness, etc.); it requires a gaze capable of probing more deeply, of proceeding from the real to the possible—as when Michelangelo "sees" a David in the formless block abandoned by other sculptors.
In the late 1950s, experiments such as the cybernetic sculptures of Nicolas Schöffer or the programmatic music compositions of John Cage and Iannis Xenakis transposed systems theory from the sciences to the arts. By the 1960s, artists as diverse as Roy Ascott, Hans Haacke, Robert Morris, Sonia Sheridan, and Stephen Willats were breaking with accepted aesthetics to embrace open systems that emphasized organism over mechanism, dynamic processes of interaction among elements, and the observer's role as an inextricable part of the system. Jack Burnham's 1968 Artforum essay Systems Aesthetics and his 1970 Software exhibition marked the high point of systems-based art until its resurgence in the changed conditions of the twenty-first century.
Many historians make it a principal part of their business to investigate and explain the unfamiliar beliefs we encounter in past societies. But what is the relationship between our provision of such explanations and our assessment of the truth of such beliefs? The question is obviously a highly intractable one, but no practising historian can hope to evade it, as many philosophers have recently and rightly pointed out.