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The Soulful Science:
What Economists Really Do and Why It Matters
Revised Edition
Diane Coyle

Paperback | 2009 | $21.95 | £17.95 | ISBN: 9780691143163
304 pp. | 6 x 9 1/4
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eBook | ISBN: 9781400833689 |
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The Chronicle Review article by Diane Coyle:
"Economics Is on the Verge of a Golden Age"

Diane Coyle
Play audio.
(Interview by Russ Roberts, Econ Talk host)

For many, Thomas Carlyle's put-down of economics as "the dismal science" rings true--especially in the aftermath of the crash of 2008. But Diane Coyle argues that economics today is more soulful than dismal, a more practical and human science than ever before. The Soulful Science describes the remarkable creative renaissance in economics, how economic thinking is being applied to the paradoxes of everyday life.

This revised edition incorporates the latest developments in the field, including the rise of behavioral finance, the failure of carbon trading, and the growing trend of government bailouts. She also discusses such major debates as the relationship between economic statistics and presidential elections, the boundary between private choice and public action, and who is to blame for today's banking crisis.


Praise for Princeton's previous editions: "Coyle's style is very accessible, and this book is an excellent survey of the frontiers of economics for the general reader. . . . The Soulful Science can be recommended highly."--Paul Ormerod, Times Higher Education Supplement

Praise for Princeton's previous editions: "The simple aim of The Soulful Science is to describe what economists do, how the field has changed in the past 10 years or so, and why you should care. It succeeds admirably."--Financial Times

Praise for Princeton's previous editions: "This is an astonishing book: beautifully written."--Andrew Hilton, Financial World

Praise for Princeton's previous editions: "Fluently written with the balance of a good novel, the result is a tour de force."--Donald Anderson, Business Economist

Praise for Princeton's previous editions: "The Soulful Science is . . . a grand whirlwind tour of modern economics, with fascinating vignettes of individual economists. It's a trip worth taking."--David Colander, American Scientist

"Coyle is a talented writer and her book shows that good communication skills, to and with readers, assure wide appeal to almost the entire spectrum of economic thinkers."--Liviu Drugus, European Legacy

Table of Contents:

Acknowledgements vii
Introduction 1
Prologue to Part1 9

Part 1. The Mysteries of Wealth and Poverty 11

Chapter One: The History Detectives 13
Chapter Two: What Makes Economies Grow? 39
Chapter Three: How to Make Poverty History 68
Prologue to Part 2 103

Part 2. Are Individuals Free to Choose? 105

Chapter Four: What's It All About? 107
Chapter Five: Economics for Humans 128
Chapter Six: Information and Markets 156
Prologue to Part 3 185

Part 3. Nature, Markets, and Society 187

Chapter Seven: Murderous Apes and Entrepreneurs 189
Chapter Eight: Economy versus Society 213
Chapter Nine: Why Economics Has Soul 242

References 273
Index 289

This book has been translated into:

  • Chinese (Simplified)

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