These may not sound like typical questions for an economist 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 the conventional wisdom on its head. Thus the new field of study contained in this audiobook: Freakonomics.
Levitt and co-author Stephen J. 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 working of a crack gang....The truth about real-estate agents....The secrets of the Klu Klux Klan.
What unites all these stories is a belief that the modern world is even more intriguing than we think. All it takes is a new way of looking, and Freakonomics will redefine the way we view the modern world.
©2006 Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner; (P)2006 HarperCollins Publishers
"Refreshingly accessible and engrossing." (Publishers Weekly)
I always had the naive impression that the field of economics was constricted to the study of economy. The questions posed and examined by Steven Levitt written about in this books have completely changed my view of economics, and sparked my own interest in learning how I can investigate such questions with the tools of economics.
Fantastic book, with a fantastic narrator. As someone who typically listens to audio books at 2x speed, I found Stephen Dubner's consistent tone and pace a fantastic 'feature' of this audiobook.
Thoreau's 'Walden' and Ayn Rand's 25th anniversary introduction to 'The Fountainhead' summarize my library well.
While this title does teeter on the line between hypothetical conjectures (the advertised way of thinking) and this-is-fact conclusions (how the book actually reads), I cannot deny I had terrific fun listening to this title. Narration is plenty fine.
If the appearances of the world and the society around us don't cause you to wonder more about why we operate as we do, then this title isn't for you. Otherwise, well worth the credit.
Greatly enjoyable. Thought provoking. The authors have a wry way of parsing and examining the everday issues we all face. Highly recommend Freakonomics...
Overall liked the book. I really liked the part about parenting and how much parents and school matter in a child's life. It gave me some good ammunition to bring down stuck up parents a few notches... Some of the sections seemed a little drawn out (mainly referring to the child naming section), but overall a good read.
Quite entertaining and an easy listen overall. Some of the arguments, including the well known ones that link abortion to crime, for example, are quite jarring to hear...
Still, am interesting romp through a variety of topics and the magic of incentives to shape behavior.
This book shows how anything can be quantified and presents several compelling ways to look at situations in order to analyze them.
How to Measure Anything - because it provides unique ways to analyze data. Having said that, Freakonomics is much more story based where How to Measure Anything is much more of a technical howto.
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