The Great Escape

Health, Wealth, and the Origins of Inequality
Narrated by: Matthew Brenher
Length: 12 hrs and 13 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (141 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The world is a better place than it used to be. People are healthier, wealthier, and live longer. Yet the escapes from destitution by so many has left gaping inequalities between people and nations. 

In The Great Escape, Angus Deaton - one of the foremost experts on economic development and on poverty - tells the remarkable story of how, beginning 250 years ago, some parts of the world experienced sustained progress, opening up gaps and setting the stage for today's disproportionately unequal world. Deaton takes an in-depth look at the historical and ongoing patterns behind the health and wealth of nations and addresses what needs to be done to help those left behind. 

Deaton describes vast innovations and wrenching setbacks: the successes of antibiotics, pest control, vaccinations, and clean water on one hand and disastrous famines and the HIV/AIDS epidemic on the other. He examines the United States, a nation that has prospered but is today experiencing slower growth and increasing inequality. He also considers how economic growth in India and China has improved the lives of more than a billion people. Deaton argues that international aid has been ineffective and even harmful. He suggests alternative efforts - including reforming incentives to drug companies and lifting trade restrictions - that will allow the developing world to bring about its own great escape. 

Demonstrating how changes in health and living standards have transformed our lives, The Great Escape is a powerful guide to addressing the well-being of all nations.

©2016 Angus Deaton (P)2016 Blackstone Audio

What listeners say about The Great Escape

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not worth listening

Unless the money goes to the people that the author seems to be caring for especially, this book is a waste your money. Also it is a waste of your time.
Scarcely is there any novel ideas or profound insight. I can hardly believe that this book was written by a Nobel laureate.

1 person found this helpful

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Most accessible despite the seriousness of the topic

Deaton uses the story line of the movie The Great Escape to recount how advances in knowledge on health and wealth create the opportunity for some to escape the world of poverty thereby creating or deepening inequality.

This evidence based, jargon free book is refreshingly impartial in its treatment of inequality. A must read (listen) for those who care about inequality and want to do something about it.

The book contains some tables and graphics that are well enough presented but require a little imagination to mentally recreate from the verbal description.

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A great reflection and direction for the future

In a world gone mad, it's was good to listen (and read) a thorough reflection of economic development around the world, and it's impact on poverty, health and well-being. No matter the side of the fence you are on, The Great Escape is a must.

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really interesting and enlighten book

A new and realistic way to see and understand the mechanics of the world . It is inspiring and most be an obligated subject of study for everyone, specially any person that expect to be involved in politics, today or in the near future.

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Great book with a puzzling concluding chapter.

I agree with Bill Gates's opinion of this book. It's a great description of the demographic transition that the world has mostly already undergone, but it ends with a chapter questioning the utility of international aid.

Check out the book Poor Economics for an important second opinion.

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enlightening

I feel like this book gave wonderful explanations of a Viewpoint that is not intuitive

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Great book!

The book is great. It is my opinion that everyone should listen to this book. The speed of the reader is too slow for me (but it might be optimum for some users). Ways to rectify that:

1. Thoughts and prayers approach: Wish the reader would have read a little faster and then accept your fate.

or

2. Politely ask amazon that they build an iphone audible app that will give the listeners an option to listen at speed of 1.10x or 1.15x. The 1.0x speed is too slow. 1.25x speed is too fast.

or

3. Buy an Android phone on which such options are available for the Audible app.

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what is going on with poverty?

The relationships between wealth and health as weel the influence of political structure and medicine

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great, well researched and well thought out book!

Awesome book, but a little hard to follow in audio form without seeing referenced graphs.

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very informative book

This is a very informative book. The arguments are well constructed, explanations are clear. It is explained in a bit of a dry and academic fashion however.
I recommend this book for anyone interested in international povery and inequality.

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  • Cipolla
  • 04-16-16

Graphs? What graphs? This is an audiobook

Probably a very interesting book, however constant references to graphs I can't see because I am listning to an audiobook, made me feel like I was missing out on a lot of points. Go for the printed or tablet version.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-14-17

An informative synopsis of growth

Deaton's tome combines a tad dry presentation with incredibly informative and well-argued contents. Summarizes decades worth of research. Provides some good work on development, growth and wealth creation, with a special focus on public health improvements.

Among its highlights, the book offers a strident critique of foreign aid and technocratic management from an institutional point of view.

The audiobook suffers from the presence of many graphs, which must be read separately.

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  • Amanda
  • 08-02-19

Needs a PDF.

This book was not suitable for release as an audio without including a PDF due to the constant references to graphs and data which could not be viewed. I had to return this book.