Freakonomics – More interesting than your college class

Freakonomics Book Cover
Visit the Freakonomics Website & BlogFreakonomics Image from Wikipedia

It’s summer so I’ve been reading more than usual, partly because I’ve taken more holidays than in the winter and partly because the weather is more conducive to sitting outside with a book.

This morning I finished the last chapter of Freakonomics. It was a very interesting read and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn more about how the world works. Levitt’s book was certainly more entertaining than Economics 101, but it also validated a lot of the economic theory we took in school.

The best part about Freakonomics was to read an economist describing things in terms other than “pizza”, “widgets”, or “beer”.

Following is a list of Freakonomics content, by chapter, from Wikipedia:

  • Chapter 1: Discovering cheating as applied to teachers and sumo wrestlers (See below)
  • Chapter 2: Information control as applied to the Ku Klux Klan and real-estate agents
  • Chapter 3: The economics of drug dealing, including the surprisingly low wages and abject working conditions of crack cocaine dealers
  • Chapter 4: The controversial role legalized abortion has played in reducing crime. (Levitt explored this topic in an earlier paper entitled “The Impact of Legalized Abortion on Crime.”)
  • Chapter 5: The negligible effects of good parenting on education (instead, the authors assert that it is what the parents are, not what they do, that makes a difference)
  • Chapter 6: The socioeconomic patterns of naming children

Other summer reading this year: