In order to understand how we shape our future, we need to understand the path that's led us to where we are. Check out 10 recommended economic history books and what Amazon customers have to say about them.
Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty
"The empirical work he has done in assembling the income and wealth concentration for countries is simply invaluable. We have some data like gini and labor vs. capital income, but to meticulously collect and analyze specific percentiles of income and wealth in many nations is truly groundbreaking."
The Founders of Finance by Thomas K. McCraw
"If you have any interest in the history of some of great shapers and developers of our US Treasury, this is the book for you. I loved the section about Hamilton and there were a few new facts the author focuses on but the real meat was in the introduction of Gallatin. I have never studied about him until now and that's what makes this book great, it's shows how much of huge impact these two men have, to this day, on our country. A top notch book that is insightful and a joy to read."
Freaks of Fortune by Jonathan Levy
"This book has opened my eyes to depths and meanings of risk, risk transfer, insurance, and a great array of related topics, I never grasped at anything like this level before."
The Crisis of Capitalist Democracy by Richard A. Posner
"So what is a federal judge and a law professor doing by trying to explain the causes of the recent financial crisis? That's what makes Posner so exceptional, his knowledge of economics is incredible, but even more amazing is his ability to explain esoteric subjects like derivatives in simply language so that even those of us with little background in economics can understand what he's talking about."
The Great Persuasion by Angus Burgin
"Writing about intellectual history tends to fall prey to one of two different vices. If the author is a member of the intellectual movement he is writing about, there is a tendency toward hagiography, with unflattering details carefully airbrushed out. On the other hand, if the author is not an adherent of the ideas he is describing, he's likely to descend into caricature in the opposite direction, failing to appreciate key nuances in the protagonists' arguments and attributing simplistic motives to them. Burgin deftly avoids both vices, presenting a sympathetic account of the thinkers he covers but maintaining a critical distance from their ideas."
A Failure of Capitalism by The Honorable Richard A. Posner
"The book is well argued and much more thorough than I can convey here. One of the great things about Judge Posner's style is that he anticipates all of the reader's objections and tries to address them in good faith. Whether you agree or disagree, he is always worth reading."
The Illusion of Free Markets by Bernard E. Harcourt
"I found this book to be a very interesting history of classical economics as understood by the French. At least on the popular level, we rarely get a view of French economics and the reciprocal relationship between English and French economic philosophers. I found the book to be erudite and fascinating and would recumbent it to all."
Making the European Monetary Union by Harold James
"If you are interested in the development of the European Monetary Union, as well as all the ancillary financial supporting commissions, the machinations of currency creation, politics and "in fighting", and, you wish to see this process "soup to nuts" -- from it's most abstruse departure point to the present, this book is for you."
When Wall Street Met Main Street by Julia C. Ott
"This book is at its best when it describes government bond drives during WW1 (and their use of propaganda) and the strategies bore out by corporations to reinvent themselves in the public eye (and profit on all the new, naive investors)."
Walter Lippmann by Craufurd D. Goodwin (Pre-order Now, Available Sept. 22)
Product Description: Walter Lippmann was the most distinguished American journalist and public philosopher of the twentieth century. But he was also something more: a public economist who helped millions of ordinary citizens make sense of the most devastating economic depression in history. Craufurd Goodwin offers a new perspective from which to view this celebrated but only partly understood icon of American letters.