163R. Harrod to unidentified, 8 May 1929 [a] , [1]

Harrod comments as follows on the philosophy he was taught in Greats at Oxford: "I knew that what was taught me was wrong. I couldnt say quite why and had resort to objections which to a mature mind no doubt seemed pettifogging or trivial. But when Greats was impending, I said to myself--I mustnt risk my class". And: "When I was an undergraduate I tortured myself about philosophy. How many of those who accepted the orthodox doctrines and got their firsts without difficulty or struggle did that? Were they more sincere? Were they more fundamentally stable? Do you really suppose that what they are given is the truth?"

  1. 1. The letter was addressed to "Frank"--possibly Frank Ramsey. Harrod later recollected having shared with Ramsey the contempt for the doctrines taught in Oxford when he was an undergraduate: see The Life of John Maynard Keynes (1951), p. 321.
    1. a. From Christ Church, Oxford#, ALS, four pages, in HPBL Add. 72763/166-67. It is not clear whether this is a draft, or a letter never sent, as it was found among Harrod's papers.


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