Scholarly Comments on Academic Economics

Richard T. Ely: The Confederate Flag of the AEA?

by and


During the Progressive Era, a new breed of social reformers advocated policies such as the segregation of lesser people, including entire races of people, to labor colonies in order to advance social evolution. Prominent among these Progressives was Richard T. Ely, a founder of the American Economic Association, recently honored by that organization in its Economists’ Calendar. To put this honor into proper perspective, this article compiles 55 quotations of Richard T. Ely, spanning his entire professional career, on issues such as eugenics, race, and individual rights versus the rights of the state.


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Volume (Issue)
JEL classification
B15, B31, J14, J15
Richard T. Ely, eugenics, race, immigration, nationalism, colonialism
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