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                               Seminar Reading Resources


Economic Ideas-Lite


   Heilbronner, Robert L. The Worldly Philosophers, 7th edition (1995)

            A"Must Read." The standard undergraduate introduction. Easy reading but the essentials are there.


Economic Ideas-Middle Weight


   Friedman, Milton. Capitalism and Freedom,

           A "Must Read" A serious application of economic principles to a wide range of problems by a Nobel Prize winner. 


   Hayek, Friedrich A. The Road to Serfdom. 

Optional. A Nobel Prize winner for his no-longer-read work on monetary theory, Hayek (along with Ludwig von Mises)

was a major proponent libertarian economic philosophy. This book is now dated (from the early post WWII-Pre Cold War era)

and little read nowadays, but still good reading.


    Schumpeter, Joseph A. Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy

         The first four chapters (on Marx) are a "Must Read." The rest is optional but excellent. Schumpeter admired Marx but not

         Marxism. He shared Marx's vision that capitalism was doomed, but for very different reasons.


    Stigler, George J. Essays in the History of Economics, University of Chicago Press, 1965.

             Out of print but selected chapters are available at links on the syllabus page.


Economic Ideas-Industrial Strength


    Blaug, Mark, Economic Theory in Retrospect, 5th edition.

This is the bible for both undergraduates and graduate students. It has far more detail than required for this seminar, but for those

who have a fancy for a deeper understanding of the debates, this is a must. It is a reference work, not to be read from cover to cover

by the faint-hearted.



                                                          Additional Resources


The emphasis of the seminar is on macroeconomics, particularly on the interpretation of capitalism and its dynamics up to Keynes. For those

interested in a fuller treatment of the field, particularly in microeconomics, the following very optional reading is recommended.


Flynn, Sean M. Economics for Dummies

            A broad overview—Economics 101 without the pain. The focus is on modern economics, not on the history of economic thought. 


Bauman,Yoram. Quantum Microeconomics. (To retrieve this, click here. This PDF file requires Adobe Reader)

An open-source textbook on the principles of microeconomics written by a PhD economist who is also a standup comic.  


Schumpeter, Joseph A. History of Economic Analysis,

Schumpeter--called “the last man who knew everything”--spent much of his life writing a history of economic thought. This 1000-page

result was published posthumously after editing of Schumpeter's notes by  his wife, Elizabeth Boody Schumpeter. Extremely erudite and

densely packed, difficult and often disjointed, this is the Source of the River of the History of Economic Thought. If Blaug doesn’t satisfy,

try this. If you can complete this, you should get an Olympic Gold Medal for Tenacity and Commitment.