The Ordinary Business of Life: A History of Economics from the Ancient World to the Twenty-First Century

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9780691116297: The Ordinary Business of Life: A History of Economics from the Ancient World to the Twenty-First Century

In some of Western culture's earliest writings, Hesiod defined the basic economic problem as one of scarce resources, a view still held by most economists. Diocletian tried to save the falling Roman Empire with wage and price fixes--a strategy that has not gone entirely out of style. And just as they did in the late nineteenth century, thinkers trained in physics renovated economic inquiry in the late twentieth century. Taking us from Homer to the frontiers of game theory, this book presents an engrossing history of economics, what Alfred Marshall called "the study of mankind in the ordinary business of life."


While some regard economics as a modern invention, Roger Backhouse shows that economic ideas were influential even in antiquity--and that the origins of contemporary economic thought can be traced back to the ancients. He reveals the genesis of what we have come to think of as economic theory and shows the remarkable but seldom explored impact of economics, natural science, and philosophy on one another. Along the way, he introduces the fascinating characters who have thought about money and markets, including theologians, philosophers, politicians, lawyers, and poets as well as economists themselves. We learn how some of history's most influential concepts arose from specific times and places: from the Stoic notion of natural law to the mercantilism that rose with the European nation-state; from postwar development economics to the recent experimental and statistical economics made possible by affluence and powerful computers.


Vividly written and unprecedented in its integration of ancient and modern economic history, this book is the best history of economics--and among the finest intellectual histories--to be published since Heilbroner's The Worldly Philosophers. It proves that economics has been anything but "the dismal science."

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From the Back Cover:

"Roger Backhouse's new history of economics is just what is needed: a short but still comprehensive history of economic thought which can be read with profit not only by economists but also by a variety of noneconomists, such as historians, philosophers, sociologists, and so on. Complex ideas are summarized with exemplary clarity, and the book practically reads itself. The Ordinary Business of Life is a find."--Richard Swedberg, Stockholm University, author of Max Weber and the Idea of Economic Sociology

"In recent years many new sub-fields of economics have undermined the grand 'neoclassical synthesis' of the mid-twentieth century. Readers of this concise yet sweeping survey will see clearly that today's major dissenting schools, like neoclassical economics itself, have deep roots in the discipline's rich classical heritage. Roger Backhouse has written an elegant and thoroughly enjoyable book that will enable a broad audience to appreciate both the continuities of economic thought and its unavoidable inner tensions."--Timur Kuran, Professor of Economics and Law and King Faisal Professor of Islamic Thought and Culture, University of Southern California

"Roger Backhouse provides what is perhaps the most readable history of the dismal science, describing the role of economic ideas in shaping the way we live and think from the ancient world to the present. Although it is obviously difficult to describe how economic models and theories evolved over several millennia, Mr. Backhouse has succeeded admirably. Few books can claim to provide such an accessible and complete cataloging of the role that economic ideas have played in the 'ordinary business of life.' "--George Borjas, Harvard University, and author of Heaven's Door: Immigration Policy and the American Economy

"Backhouse is perhaps the best person in the world to write this historian's history of economic thought. His is the history of the visions, not the technical tools, of the great economic traditions and schools. His deep knowledge of economic theory shows on every page."--Herbert Gintis, University of Massachusetts, author of Game Theory Evolving

About the Author:

Roger E. Backhouse holds a Chair in the History and Philosophy of Economics at the University of Birmingham. He is the author of Truth and Progress in Economic Knowledge, Economists and the Economy, and A History of Modern Economic Analysis.

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, United States, 2004. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In some of Western culture s earliest writings, Hesiod defined the basic economic problem as one of scarce resources, a view still held by most economists. Diocletian tried to save the falling Roman Empire with wage and price fixes--a strategy that has not gone entirely out of style. And just as they did in the late nineteenth century, thinkers trained in physics renovated economic inquiry in the late twentieth century. Taking us from Homer to the frontiers of game theory, this book presents an engrossing history of economics, what Alfred Marshall called the study of mankind in the ordinary business of life. While some regard economics as a modern invention, Roger Backhouse shows that economic ideas were influential even in antiquity--and that the origins of contemporary economic thought can be traced back to the ancients. He reveals the genesis of what we have come to think of as economic theory and shows the remarkable but seldom explored impact of economics, natural science, and philosophy on one another. Along the way, he introduces the fascinating characters who have thought about money and markets, including theologians, philosophers, politicians, lawyers, and poets as well as economists themselves. We learn how some of history s most influential concepts arose from specific times and places: from the Stoic notion of natural law to the mercantilism that rose with the European nation-state; from postwar development economics to the recent experimental and statistical economics made possible by affluence and powerful computers. Vividly written and unprecedented in its integration of ancient and modern economic history, this book is the best history of economics--and among the finest intellectual histories--to be published since Heilbroner s The Worldly Philosophers. It proves that economics has been anything but the dismal science. Codice libro della libreria AAS9780691116297

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, United States, 2004. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In some of Western culture s earliest writings, Hesiod defined the basic economic problem as one of scarce resources, a view still held by most economists. Diocletian tried to save the falling Roman Empire with wage and price fixes--a strategy that has not gone entirely out of style. And just as they did in the late nineteenth century, thinkers trained in physics renovated economic inquiry in the late twentieth century. Taking us from Homer to the frontiers of game theory, this book presents an engrossing history of economics, what Alfred Marshall called the study of mankind in the ordinary business of life. While some regard economics as a modern invention, Roger Backhouse shows that economic ideas were influential even in antiquity--and that the origins of contemporary economic thought can be traced back to the ancients. He reveals the genesis of what we have come to think of as economic theory and shows the remarkable but seldom explored impact of economics, natural science, and philosophy on one another. Along the way, he introduces the fascinating characters who have thought about money and markets, including theologians, philosophers, politicians, lawyers, and poets as well as economists themselves. We learn how some of history s most influential concepts arose from specific times and places: from the Stoic notion of natural law to the mercantilism that rose with the European nation-state; from postwar development economics to the recent experimental and statistical economics made possible by affluence and powerful computers. Vividly written and unprecedented in its integration of ancient and modern economic history, this book is the best history of economics--and among the finest intellectual histories--to be published since Heilbroner s The Worldly Philosophers. It proves that economics has been anything but the dismal science. Codice libro della libreria AAS9780691116297

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, United States, 2004. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. In some of Western culture s earliest writings, Hesiod defined the basic economic problem as one of scarce resources, a view still held by most economists. Diocletian tried to save the falling Roman Empire with wage and price fixes--a strategy that has not gone entirely out of style. And just as they did in the late nineteenth century, thinkers trained in physics renovated economic inquiry in the late twentieth century. Taking us from Homer to the frontiers of game theory, this book presents an engrossing history of economics, what Alfred Marshall called the study of mankind in the ordinary business of life. While some regard economics as a modern invention, Roger Backhouse shows that economic ideas were influential even in antiquity--and that the origins of contemporary economic thought can be traced back to the ancients. He reveals the genesis of what we have come to think of as economic theory and shows the remarkable but seldom explored impact of economics, natural science, and philosophy on one another. Along the way, he introduces the fascinating characters who have thought about money and markets, including theologians, philosophers, politicians, lawyers, and poets as well as economists themselves. We learn how some of history s most influential concepts arose from specific times and places: from the Stoic notion of natural law to the mercantilism that rose with the European nation-state; from postwar development economics to the recent experimental and statistical economics made possible by affluence and powerful computers. Vividly written and unprecedented in its integration of ancient and modern economic history, this book is the best history of economics--and among the finest intellectual histories--to be published since Heilbroner s The Worldly Philosophers. It proves that economics has been anything but the dismal science. Codice libro della libreria BTE9780691116297

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press 3/21/2004, 2004. Paperback or Softback. Condizione libro: New. The Ordinary Business of Life: A History of Economics from the Ancient World to the Twenty-First Century. Book. Codice libro della libreria BBS-9780691116297

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Paperback. 384 pages. Dimensions: 7.8in. x 4.9in. x 1.2in.In some of Western cultures earliest writings, Hesiod defined the basic economic problem as one of scarce resources, a view still held by most economists. Diocletian tried to save the falling Roman Empire with wage and price fixes--a strategy that has not gone entirely out of style. And just as they did in the late nineteenth century, thinkers trained in physics renovated economic inquiry in the late twentieth century. Taking us from Homer to the frontiers of game theory, this book presents an engrossing history of economics, what Alfred Marshall called the study of mankind in the ordinary business of life. While some regard economics as a modern invention, Roger Backhouse shows that economic ideas were influential even in antiquity--and that the origins of contemporary economic thought can be traced back to the ancients. He reveals the genesis of what we have come to think of as economic theory and shows the remarkable but seldom explored impact of economics, natural science, and philosophy on one another. Along the way, he introduces the fascinating characters who have thought about money and markets, including theologians, philosophers, politicians, lawyers, and poets as well as economists themselves. We learn how some of historys most influential concepts arose from specific times and places: from the Stoic notion of natural law to the mercantilism that rose with the European nation-state; from postwar development economics to the recent experimental and statistical economics made possible by affluence and powerful computers. Vividly written and unprecedented in its integration of ancient and modern economic history, this book is the best history of economics--and among the finest intellectual histories--to be published since Heilbroners The Worldly Philosophers. It proves that economics has been anything but the dismal science. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Codice libro della libreria 9780691116297

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