Review of Cocktail Party Economics

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Review of Cocktail Party Economics for The Economist
As an economics training book, Cocktail Party Economics highlights the concepts of economics, bringing them to light in a simple way without taking away from the importance of each theory and thought. This is a book written to engage its readers and interest them in the idea of the economic thought process. Addressed to “students everywhere, especially those who like economics … or want to,” this book is exactly that. Cocktail Party Economics is a skillful portrayal of the process of economic thought, which entertains young readers due to the author’s sometimes silly and sarcastic moments. Economics may sometimes appear to be a difficult subject filled with elaborate terms and descriptions hard to grasp the understanding of, yet the book brings the subject to life and turns it into a less complex compilation of concepts in a cocktail party setting.

Each chapter begins with a quote which ties in the ideas of the following paragraphs and each chapter ends with a simple yet important sentence, tying in the concepts in which the reader has just been educated on. In Chapter 5, the beginning quote states: “There is hardly anybody good for everything, and there is scarcely anybody who is absolutely good for nothing.” This was spoken by Philip Dormer Stanhope, a British statesman. The quote at the beginning of the chapter provokes the mind of the reader to begin to think of The Absolute of Comparative Advantage (Chapter 5). At the end of the chapter, there is a picture of a cocktail napkin with a sentence upon it, stating: “Comparative advantage will determine what people will supply.” This sentence is the anchor to a chapter full of ideas about comparative advantage, bringing the chapter to a close, simply and delightfully. The idea of using the cocktail napkin to close each chapter is simply genius; it unites the ideas of the chapters with the overall theme of the book.

Gossip Column: an imaginative...
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