Review: The Logic of Life

The Logic of Life
The Logic of Life by Tim Harford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A grandiose title that tells you this book is a little more ambitious than “The Undercover Economist”. Harford writes with passion and urgency, defending rational choice theory as a useful framework for predicting in the majority of cases how the majority of people behave. Because people change their behaviours in response to incentives (and these include non-financial ones), rational choice theory also lends itself well to policymaking.

Someone needs to write about how those incentives can or should be structured, given findings in new branches of economics such as behavioural economics. Harford throws in a few comments about the applicability of some of Kahneman’s lab research to real world situations, and hints at “neuroeconomics”. Perhaps a follow-up is needed?

View all my reviews

Advertisements

Review: Venus Bound: The Erotic Voyage of the Olympia Press

Venus Bound: The Erotic Voyage of the Olympia Press
Venus Bound: The Erotic Voyage of the Olympia Press by John De St. Jorre
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Enjoyed the portraits of the universe of little and well-known literary characters who walked through the doors of Olympia, and the stories behind the books that have earned Olympia Press and Girodias places in literary history.

Good to be reminded that the romance of publishing and writing is sustained by ordinary people — writers, publishers and sellers who are often cliquish, ungrateful and unpleasant and all driven by their love for good writing 🙂

In some parts St. Jorre errs on the side of comprehensiveness rather than flair. While he doesn’t avoid describing Olympia Press founder Maurice Girodias’ flaws, he’s fairly discreet.

View all my reviews