Cerebral Shangrila

Friday, August 26, 2005

Economics -- Books of interest

Despite the famous J.K.Galbraith quote that " Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists" , I got interested in economics. Well, it isn't tough to see why ? Afterall, topics like Inflation,GDP,Productivity , International tade -- have a ring to it . Everyone has a right to sound intellectual and I seized my right .

Economics, amidst all chaos, sounded like the only pure science in an MBA. So I began my quest for nirvana in the confused world of economics. I am not a keynesian,adam-smithian,monetarist or a socialist yet and perhaps will never be. I am just a clumsy student and will always remain as one .

Over the past few weeks, I have been trying to read up as much as possible on Economics and my quest has taken me to the following books :

Books that I have Read :

1. Priniciples of Economics by Gregory Mankiw ( My textbook)

2. Capitalism & Freedom by Milton Friedman

3. Free to Choose by Milton Friedman & Rose Friedman

4. Capitalism , Socialism & Democracy by Joseph Schumpeter

5. Pop Internationalism by Paul Krugman

6. Accidental Theorist and other dispatches from dismal science by Paul Krugman

7. In defense of Globalisation by Jagdish Bhagwati

Books that I am planning to read :

1. Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith

2. The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money by J.M.Keynes

3. The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time by Jeffrey Sachs

4. Confessions of an economic hitman by John Perkins

5. Freakonomics by Stevel Levitt & Stephen Dubner

Folks, please do suggest other interesting / good books in this genre. For starters, this list might be a good place to start !


  • You may want to check this out

    "Hands Off: Why Government Is a Menace to Economic Health" by Susan Lee

    The only economics book I've ever read (randomly picked off the shelf from NLB at a time when I wanted to sound all intellectual!)

    You can find a review here

    By Blogger Dinesh, at 4:10 PM  

  • Theory of Comparitive advantage - by ricardo is a good one

    Wow, you sure read a lot! Lots of books for sure - oscillator

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:48 PM  

  • Hey,

    I wanted to comment something relevant but then my ignorance flags itself when it comes to economics. But well, As I stumbled on your blog, I didnt want to leave it without waving a Hi to u!

    I can think of Chankya's Arthasastra(Just kidding:-))

    Seri seri me soccting off!

    have a good one!

    Smiles etc.,


    By Blogger Smyta, at 12:29 AM  

  • I just started reading The Wealth of Nations. It is simple to read and at the same time erudite. A difficult balance that Adam Smith's genius has achieved.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:47 AM  

  • AM Sorry if I am spamming you with my comments. I loved Freakonomics. As an engineer with an acute interest in economics, I loved the data driven, no-nonsense approach of the book. Steven Levitt is unusual in his psychological and there humane approach to economics.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:51 AM  

  • check out The Invisible Heart : An Economic Romance and Samuelson's Economics text.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:55 AM  

  • On a serious note, you have Adams, Friedman ( for monetary eco),Keynes on employment, Ricardo on Rent and Amartya Sen for developmental eco - all are good to read but the reality does not go by theory... the same way people find a reason for the stock market volatilities rather than the other way round. On a lighter vein I used to have a colleague who did his BTech in IIT Powai, MBA at IIM, Ahmedabad and is now living the life of an Economist for the largest home-bred Indian Group called Aditya Birla as a chief economist. Life dictates and economist chooses in the end... Good reading ...Capricorn

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:55 PM  

  • All -- Thanks for the suggestions !

    By Blogger Cogito, at 12:09 PM  

  • Anything on Game theory.
    And now i am going to point you to some fairly 'different' kinds of economics books - equally important to read. No matter which side of the economic spectrum you support it is always important to know what the other side has to say!here goes

    Das Capital by Marx and Engels - an important viewpoint that cannot be ignored. (may not be followed :)

    The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money - Keynes and as a corolloray to that "The Economic Consequences of the Peace " - as both books defined post war economics till the 1980's.

    Poverty Curtain by Mahbub Ul Huq - a brilliant piece of writing in the area of social economics/ developmental economics

    Amatya Sen & Jean Dreze - ominibus. difficult to read but worth it.

    I personally enjoyed reading Paul Sameulson but if you are not an economics major - it can be a difficult read:)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:13 PM  

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