the company of strangers a natural history of economic life

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The Company Of Strangers

Author : Paul Seabright
ISBN : 1400834783
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 88. 68 MB
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The Company of Strangers shows us the remarkable strangeness, and fragility, of our everyday lives. This completely revised and updated edition includes a new chapter analyzing how the rise and fall of social trust explain the unsustainable boom in the global economy over the past decade and the financial crisis that succeeded it. Drawing on insights from biology, anthropology, history, psychology, and literature, Paul Seabright explores how our evolved ability of abstract reasoning has allowed institutions like money, markets, cities, and the banking system to provide the foundations of social trust that we need in our everyday lives. Even the simple acts of buying food and clothing depend on an astonishing web of interaction that spans the globe. How did humans develop the ability to trust total strangers with providing our most basic needs?

The Company Of Strangers

Author : Paul Seabright
ISBN : 0691124523
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 22. 72 MB
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Explores how humans' evolved ability of abstract reasoning has allowed such institutions as money, markets, cities and the banking system to provide a foundation of social trust, in a revised edition that has a new chapter explaining how the rise and fall of social trust resulted in the financial crisis. Original.

The Company Of Strangers

Author : Paul Seabright
ISBN : 0691118213
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 55. 10 MB
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Explores how humans' evolved ability of abstract reasoning has allowed such institutions as money, markets, cities and the banking system to provide a foundation of social trust, in a revised edition that has a new chapter explaining how the rise and fall of social trust resulted in the financial crisis. Original.

The War Of The Sexes

Author : Paul Seabright
ISBN : 9780691133010
Genre : Science
File Size : 46. 30 MB
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Drawing on biology, sociology, anthropology and economics the author argues that humans have a deep-seated propensity for both conflict and cooperation between the sexes, and that we must understand how these have shaped the modern world to achieve greater harmony.

Identity Economics

Author : George A. Akerlof
ISBN : 140083418X
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 72. 85 MB
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Identity Economics provides an important and compelling new way to understand human behavior, revealing how our identities--and not just economic incentives--influence our decisions. In 1995, economist Rachel Kranton wrote future Nobel Prize-winner George Akerlof a letter insisting that his most recent paper was wrong. Identity, she argued, was the missing element that would help to explain why people--facing the same economic circumstances--would make different choices. This was the beginning of a fourteen-year collaboration--and of Identity Economics. The authors explain how our conception of who we are and who we want to be may shape our economic lives more than any other factor, affecting how hard we work, and how we learn, spend, and save. Identity economics is a new way to understand people's decisions--at work, at school, and at home. With it, we can better appreciate why incentives like stock options work or don't; why some schools succeed and others don't; why some cities and towns don't invest in their futures--and much, much more. Identity Economics bridges a critical gap in the social sciences. It brings identity and norms to economics. People's notions of what is proper, and what is forbidden, and for whom, are fundamental to how hard they work, and how they learn, spend, and save. Thus people's identity--their conception of who they are, and of who they choose to be--may be the most important factor affecting their economic lives. And the limits placed by society on people's identity can also be crucial determinants of their economic well-being.

Morals And Markets

Author : D. Friedman
ISBN : 9781137331526
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 40. 45 MB
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Friedman and McNeill draw on recent research in evolutionary game theory and behavioral economics to explore the relationship between our moral codes and our market systems. They show how imbalance between morals and markets is at the root of the recent corporate scandals in the US as well as the global financial crisis the world continues to face.

A Farewell To Alms A Brief Economic History Of The World

Author : Gregory Clark
ISBN : 0691141282
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 33. 34 MB
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Why are some parts of the world so rich and others so poor? Why did the Industrial Revolution--and the unprecedented economic growth that came with it--occur in eighteenth-century England, and not at some other time, or in some other place? Why didn't industrialization make the whole world rich--and why did it make large parts of the world even poorer? In A Farewell to Alms, Gregory Clark tackles these profound questions and suggests a new and provocative way in which culture--not exploitation, geography, or resources--explains the wealth, and the poverty, of nations. Countering the prevailing theory that the Industrial Revolution was sparked by the sudden development of stable political, legal, and economic institutions in seventeenth-century Europe, Clark shows that such institutions existed long before industrialization. He argues instead that these institutions gradually led to deep cultural changes by encouraging people to abandon hunter-gatherer instincts-violence, impatience, and economy of effort-and adopt economic habits-hard work, rationality, and education. The problem, Clark says, is that only societies that have long histories of settlement and security seem to develop the cultural characteristics and effective workforces that enable economic growth. For the many societies that have not enjoyed long periods of stability, industrialization has not been a blessing. Clark also dissects the notion, championed by Jared Diamond in Guns, Germs, and Steel, that natural endowments such as geography account for differences in the wealth of nations. A brilliant and sobering challenge to the idea that poor societies can be economically developed through outside intervention, A Farewell to Alms may change the way global economic history is understood.

The Darwin Economy

Author : Robert H. Frank
ISBN : 9780691156682
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 37. 50 MB
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Argues that ecologist Charles Darwin's understanding of competition describes economic reality far more accurately than economist Adam Smith's theories ever did.

Braintrust

Author : Patricia S. Churchland
ISBN : 9781400889389
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 84. 92 MB
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What is morality? Where does it come from? And why do most of us heed its call most of the time? In Braintrust, neurophilosophy pioneer Patricia Churchland argues that morality originates in the biology of the brain. She describes the "neurobiological platform of bonding" that, modified by evolutionary pressures and cultural values, has led to human styles of moral behavior. The result is a provocative genealogy of morals that asks us to reevaluate the priority given to religion, absolute rules, and pure reason in accounting for the basis of morality. Moral values, Churchland argues, are rooted in a behavior common to all mammals--the caring for offspring. The evolved structure, processes, and chemistry of the brain incline humans to strive not only for self-preservation but for the well-being of allied selves--first offspring, then mates, kin, and so on, in wider and wider "caring" circles. Separation and exclusion cause pain, and the company of loved ones causes pleasure; responding to feelings of social pain and pleasure, brains adjust their circuitry to local customs. In this way, caring is apportioned, conscience molded, and moral intuitions instilled. A key part of the story is oxytocin, an ancient body-and-brain molecule that, by decreasing the stress response, allows humans to develop the trust in one another necessary for the development of close-knit ties, social institutions, and morality. A major new account of what really makes us moral, Braintrust challenges us to reconsider the origins of some of our most cherished values.

World On Fire

Author : Amy Chua
ISBN : 9781400076376
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 87. 62 MB
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The reigning consensus holds that the combination of free markets and democracy would transform the third world and sweep away the ethnic hatred and religious zealotry associated with underdevelopment. In this revelatory investigation of the true impact of globalization, Yale Law School professor Amy Chua explains why many developing countries are in fact consumed by ethnic violence after adopting free market democracy. Chua shows how in non-Western countries around the globe, free markets have concentrated starkly disproportionate wealth in the hands of a resented ethnic minority. These “market-dominant minorities” – Chinese in Southeast Asia, Croatians in the former Yugoslavia, whites in Latin America and South Africa, Indians in East Africa, Lebanese in West Africa, Jews in post-communist Russia – become objects of violent hatred. At the same time, democracy empowers the impoverished majority, unleashing ethnic demagoguery, confiscation, and sometimes genocidal revenge. She also argues that the United States has become the world’s most visible market-dominant minority, a fact that helps explain the rising tide of anti-Americanism around the world. Chua is a friend of globalization, but she urges us to find ways to spread its benefits and curb its most destructive aspects.

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