Book Search Options:  

 

 
Google full text of our books:

      
bookjacket

The Bounds of Reason:
Game Theory and the Unification of the Behavioral Sciences
Herbert Gintis

Hardcover | 2009 | $65.00 | £44.95 | ISBN: 9780691140520
304 pp. | 7 x 10 | 36 line illus. | SHOPPING CART

graduation-capTextbooks & e-Inspections for Professors

Reviews | Table of Contents
Chapter 1[PDF] pdf-icon

Google full text of this book:
 

Also available in paperback

Game theory is central to understanding human behavior and relevant to all of the behavioral sciences--from biology and economics, to anthropology and political science. However, as The Bounds of Reason demonstrates, game theory alone cannot fully explain human behavior and should instead complement other key concepts championed by the behavioral disciplines. Herbert Gintis shows that just as game theory without broader social theory is merely technical bravado, so social theory without game theory is a handicapped enterprise.

Gintis illustrates, for instance, that game theory lacks explanations for when and how rational agents share beliefs. Rather than construct a social epistemology or reasoning process that reflects the real world, game theorists make unwarranted assumptions which imply that rational agents enjoy a commonality of beliefs. But, Gintis explains, humans possess unique forms of knowledge and understanding that move us beyond being merely rational creatures to being social creatures. For a better understanding of human behavior, Gintis champions a unified approach and in doing so shows that the dividing lines between the behavioral disciplines make no scientific sense. He asks, for example, why four separate fields--economics, sociology, anthropology, and social psychology--study social behavior and organization, yet their basic assumptions are wildly at variance. The author argues that we currently have the analytical tools to render the behavioral disciplines mutually coherent.

Combining the strengths of the classical, evolutionary, and behavioral fields, The Bounds of Reason reinvigorates the useful tools of game theory and offers innovative thinking for the behavioral sciences.

Review:

"The Bounds of Reason appears as two books in one. One part develops an epistemic theory of the rational actor as an alternative to what is provided by classical game theory, and the other part is a spirited plea to use behavioral game theory as a unifying tool in all behavioral sciences. Both objectives are highly valuable, but combing them both creates friction. Friction creates heat, and Gintis, who thrives gleefully on controversial issues, may be enjoying the prospect of heated discussions."--Karl Sigmund, American Scientist

"The book is a combination of an excellent textbook on game theory and an innovation treatise advocating the unification of the behavioural sciences and refounding of game theory on different epistemic foundations. . . . It is clearly an important contribution to the current debate over the rational actor model that the rise of behaviourial economics has provoked."--Oxonomics

"Gintis' work reflects an amazing breadth of knowledge of the behavioural sciences. He is ever ready to pose unusual questions and to defend unorthodox proposals. The Bounds of Reason is Gintis' most ambitious project to date, one that draws upon all of his extraordinary originality and learning."--Peter Vanderschraaf, Journal of Economics and Philosophy

"This is a lucid, intelligent and very important book. . . . [T]his book is highly recommended for its boldness, scope, technical clarity and intellectual stimulation."-- Geoffrey M. Hodgson, Journal of Bioeconomics

Endorsement:

"Gintis contributes importantly to a new insight gaining ascendancy: economy is about the unintended consequences of human sociality. This book is firmly in the revolutionary tradition of David Hume (Convention) and Adam Smith (Sympathy)."--Vernon L. Smith, Nobel Prize-winning economist

More Endorsements

Table of Contents

This book has been translated into:

  • Japanese
  • Chinese (Simplified)

Other Princeton books authored or coauthored by Herbert Gintis:

Subject Areas:

For hardcover/paperback orders in United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia

 Hardcover : $65.00 ISBN: 9780691140520

Add to shopping cart
View contents of your shopping cart

For hardcover/paperback orders in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, and Pakistan

 Hardcover : £44.95 ISBN: 9780691140520

Add to shopping cart
View contents of your shopping cart

graduation-cap

Textbooks: Need textbooks? View our textbook site.

Teaching Professors: To request an electronic inspection copy for course use consideration,
please click on: magnifyingProfessors free on-line inspection access (All requests will be validated before access is granted).

Online exam copies are also available through these e-vendors:

  • CourseSmart®
  • Kno™
  • Prices subject to change without notice

    File created: 6/19/2015

    Questions and comments to: webmaster@press.princeton.edu
    Princeton University Press

    New Book E-mails
    New In Print
    PUP Blog
    Videos/Audios
    Princeton APPS
    Sample Chapters
    Subjects
    Series
    Catalogs
    Princeton Legacy Library
    Exam/Desk Copy
    Textbooks
    Media/Reviewers
    Rights/Permissions
    Ordering
    Recent Awards
    Princeton Shorts
    Freshman Reading
    PUP Europe
    About Us
    Contact Us
    Links
    F.A.Q.
    PUP Home


    Bookmark and Share
    Send me emails
    about new books in:
    Economics
    Sociology
    Anthropology
    Cognitive Science
    Political Science and International Relations
    Psychology
    More Choices