The article analyzes the main stages of establishment and development of Law and Economics. The history of the discipline has had a considerable impact on its current state: today Law and Economics comprises different schools and approaches. On the one hand, the competition of approaches within the single discipline has broadened its scope, but on the other hand, it has intensified contradictions between the approaches and complicated the choice of methodological framework for the analysis. The differences between various approaches are explained basing on the example of the economic analysis of contract law.
The article analyzes the conception of the history and progress of mankind, presented in recent fundamental researches by Deirdre McCloskey. Stresses characteristic of them is the non-materialistic view of the source of historical change. There is also a link to the author's views interpretation of the history of Ludwig von Mises. In the first part the article examines the controversy with almost all currently known concepts explaining the breakthrough of the Western world to the economic growth and well-being. The second part presents McCloskey’s own theory that explains this breakthrough by the radical change of rhetoric, that recognized the "bourgeois virtues" and the dignity of the bourgeoisie. In the final part attention draws to the fact that McCloskey’s views repudiate the predetermined course of history, on the one hand, and its irreversibility, on the other.
The article presents an overview of research seminar on interdisciplinary approaches to studying the economic history, held at the National Research University Higher School of Economics – Saint-Petersburg. It focuses on methodology and presentations given by the participants as well as outlines key developments of economic history. The authors conclude that developing interdisciplinary dialogue seems to be crucial for today`s research and helps scholars bring about new perspectives of analysis.