Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? How did the legalization of abortion affect the rate of violent crime? These may not sound like typical... show more
Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? How did the legalization of abortion affect the rate of violent crime? These may not sound like typical questions for an econo-mist to ask. But Steven D. Levitt is not a typical economist. He is a much-heralded scholar who studies the riddles of everyday life—from cheating and crime to sports and child-rearing—and whose conclusions turn conventional wisdom on its head. Freakonomics is a groundbreaking collaboration between Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, an award-winning author and journalist. They usually begin with a mountain of data and a simple question. Some of these questions concern life-and-death issues; others have an admittedly freakish quality. Thus the new field of study contained in this book: freakonomics. Through forceful storytelling and wry insight, Levitt and Dubner show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives—how people get what they want, or need, especially when other people want or need the same thing. In Freakonomics, they explore the hidden side of . . . well, everything. The inner workings of a crack gang. The truth about real-estate agents. The myths of campaign finance. The telltale marks of a cheating schoolteacher. The secrets of the Klu Klux Klan. What unites all these stories is a belief that the modern world, despite a great deal of complexity and downright deceit, is not impenetrable, is not unknowable, and—if the right questions are asked—is even more intriguing than we think. All it takes is a new way of looking. Freakonomics establishes this unconventional premise: If morality represents how we would like the world to work, then economics represents how it actually does work. It is true that readers of this book will be armed with enough riddles and stories to last a thousand cocktail parties. But Freakonomics can provide more than that. It will literally redefine the way we view the modern world.
Publish date: October 17th 2006
Publisher: William Morrow
Pages no: 320
Edition language: English
Series: Freakonomics (#1)
Synopsis: Look your guess is as good as mine as to what this book is about. It doesn't have much of a unifying theme (even the authors say that), so I'm kinda at a loss to say what it is about exactly. I'm not really sure what to say about this book. An economist who doesn't know anything about...
Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything (New York: William Morrow, 2005). Pp. 242. Hardcover $25.95. Last week I participated in Dubuque's 'Circles Initiative,' which is part of their 'Bridges Out of Poverty' program. During th...
I really enjoyed this book. Apparently a lot of people didn't like that it wasn't about one topic necessarily. I'm not entirely sure why that's a bad thing. The topics range from sumo wrestling to abortion, all of which were very thought-provoking. The authors worked in some central themes such as t...
For a book that so heavily relies on (mostly) untested assumptions, the repeated, passionate references to the distinction between causality and correlation is impressive if not audacious, to say the least. Suffice to say, “"As Levitt sees it, economics is a science with excellent tools for gaining ...
~~Moved from GR~~ I have seriously mixed feelings about Freakonomics, so be prepared for a very opinionated review. Like The Tipping Point, it was written by a journalist, and is an extremely engaging and entertaining read. It certainly has more scientific merit and empirical backing than Gladwell...