viernes, noviembre 24, 2006

Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner

Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything is a book by University of Chicago economist Steven Levitt and New York Times journalist Stephen J. Dubner published in 2005. Freakonomics peaked at number 2 among nonfiction on the New York Times bestseller list, and was named the 2006 Book Sense Book of the Year in the Adult Nonfiction category.

The book is a collection of economic articles written by Levitt, translated into prose meant for a wide audience. Levitt had already gained a reputation in academia for applying economic theory to diverse topics usually not covered by "traditional" economists (note that Levitt is actually not at all a "rogue" economist in that he entirely accepts the standard microeconomic paradigm of rational utility-maximization; he is merely applying it to unconventional subjects). The book's topics include:
Chapter 1: Discovering cheating as applied to teachers and sumo wrestlers (See below)
Chapter 2: Information control as applied to the Ku Klux Klan and real-estate agents
Chapter 3: The economics of drug dealing, including the surprisingly low wages and abject working conditions of crack cocaine dealers
Chapter 4: The controversial role legalized abortion has played in reducing crime. (Levitt explored this topic in an earlier paper entitled "The Impact of Legalized Abortion on Crime.")
Chapter 5: The negligible effects of good parenting on education (instead, the authors assert that it is what the parents are, not what they do, that makes a difference)
Chapter 6: The socioeconomic patterns of naming children

See also:

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