«Viviendo la Economía», el nuevo libro de Peter J. Boettke

La pasión del maestro es a menudo la fuente de inspiración para un estudiante. Este libro muestra cómo la economía afecta a todos los ámbitos de la vida, ya sea en el mercado, en las elecciones, la iglesia, la familia, o de cualquier actividad humana. Boettke cree que la economía no es sólo un juego para ser jugado por los profesionales, sino una disciplina que incide en los problemas prácticos más acuciantes en cualquier coyuntura histórica. La riqueza y la pobreza de las naciones están en juego; la duración y la calidad de vida resulta de las condiciones económicas con las cuales las personas viven.

Así que la enseñanza y el aprendizaje de la economía resultan de fundamental importancia. En el camino se nos presenta a los pensadores más importantes: a partir de Smith, Say y Bastiat, de la Escuela Clásica, a los académicos neoclásicos y austriacos (Menger, Mises, Hayek, Kirzner y Rothbard) a nuevos economistas institucionales (Alchian, Coase, Demsetz, North, Ostrom y Williamson) y teóricos de la Public Choice (Buchanan, Tullock y otros). Este atractivo y razonado libro es una lectura obligada para los economistas, estudiantes, y todos los demás que deseen entender mejor la economía.

Es mi esperanza de que los siguientes ensayos capturen no sólo mis más de treinta años de amor con la economía como disciplina, sino también la alegría que recibo de la investigación económica y de invitar a mis estudiantes a unirse a esa investigación, explica el autor.

Lamentablemente aun no disponemos de su traducción al español, pero el autor me comentó que lo estará pronto gracias al esfuerzo de la UFM.

Acceda aquí al prefacio.

Acceda aquí el capítulo 1.

Abajo, los comentarios de Bruce Caldwell, James M. Buchanan, Israel Kirzner, Vernon Smith, Steven Horwitz, Gordon Tullock, Steve Hanke, Richard E. Wagner, Mario J. Rizzo, David L. Prychitko, Randall G. Holcombe, entre varios otros.

Praise for Living Economics

Living Economics is a superb book. Peter Boettke’s passion for excellence in teaching and for his subject, mainline economics (the sort of basic economic reasoning that draws on the ideas of a line of thinkers from Adam Smith through the Austrians to people like Jim Buchanan and Elinor Ostrom) shines through on every page. It is vintage Boettke: engaging, witty, and chock full of insight. This book should be put in the hands of every first-year student of economics, if only to show them what they are missing!”
Bruce Caldwell, Research Professor of Economics and Director, Center for the History of Political Economy, Duke University

“Economics as it should be, Living Economics is a solid book that counters the excessive simulation of modern academic economics while, at the same time, avoiding the temptation to extend application of the logic beyond reasonable limits. Boettke concentrates on the primary purpose of economics, which is to convey an understanding of how, within properly designed institutional constraints, operative markets generate and distribute value without overt conflict.”
—James M. Buchanan, Jr., Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences; Advisory General Director of the Center for Study of Public Choice and Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Economics, George Mason University

Living Economics is in many ways a remarkable book. The volume luminously reflects the amazing breadth of Professor Boettke’s reading, and the deep and careful thoughtfulness with which he reads. But the true distinction of this volume consists in more than the profound economic understanding, and wealth of deeply perceptive doctrinal-history observations that fill its pages. Its distinction consists in the delightful circumstances that these riches arise from and express Peter Boettke’s extraordinary intellectual generosity and unmatched intellectual enthusiasm—rare qualities which have enabled him to discover nuggets of valuable theoretical insight in the work of a wide array of economists, many of whom are generally thought to be far away from the Austrian tradition which Boettke himself splendidly represents. Boettke’s prolific pen is dipped, not in the all-too-common ink of professional one-up-manship, but in the inkwell of an earnest, utterly benevolent—and brilliant—scholar, seeking, with all his intellectual integrity, to learn and to understand.”
—Israel M. Kirzner, Professor Emeritus of Economics, New York University

Boettke’s passion for economics and the clarity of his vision makes Living Economics a pleasure to read.  No reader will fail to benefit from his broad and deep insights.”
—Stephen E. Landsburg, Professor of Economics, University of Rochester; author, The Armchair Economist

Living Economics is inspired by Boettke’s students and great teachers, such as Boulding and Kirzner, and the central theme that economics has strayed dangerously from a ‘mainline’ emphasis on process and rules, as opposed to outcomes. The mainline sinew is rooted in Adam Smith’s The Theory of Moral Sentiments extending to Hayek, Ostrom and other moderns whom Boettke examines with deep understanding of their relevance for our time.”
—Vernon L. Smith, Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences; George L. Argyros Endowed Chair in Finance and Economics, Chapman University School of Law

“Peter Boettke has spent a career not just as a scholar of economics, but as an educator of both the general public and generations of students. In Living Economics, he reflects on the importance of teaching and of his own teachers in spreading the ideas of the mainline of economic thinking from Smith, Say and Wicksteed to Mises, Hayek, Buchanan, Coase, and Friedman, including his own contemporaries. This book is essential reading, especially in a time when the tradition of sound economics Boettke focuses on is under increasing threat by old fallacies and new politicians. The passion for ideas and economic theory that permeates these pages is exactly the inspiration one gets from a great teacher. Peter Boettke is indeed that.”
—Steven G. Horwitz, Charles A. Dana Professor of Economics, St. Lawrence University

“I am very pleased with Peter Boettke’s book Living Economics which has fully captured the essence of my work and that of others on what good economics is all about and why understanding it is so important.”
—Gordon Tullock, University Professor Emeritus of Law and Economics, George Mason University

Peter Boettke’s book Living Economics not only is splendidly characterized by broad erudition, solid analysis, shrewd observation, and expositional clarity, it appears at a propitious moment.  We are in a presidential election year, with most political spokespersons relying on embarrassingly superficial and bastardized economic diagnosis and rabble-rousing prescription.  And the bulk of professional economists persist in putting precious and arid formalism over substantive content.  It is high time—but Professor Boettke thinks that it is not too late—to join the impressive and long-persisting caravan of scholars promoting feel for, sense of, and interest in the contribution which genuine economics can contribute to a free and increasingly prosperous society.”
—William R. Allen, Professor Emeritus of Economics, University of California, Los Angeles

“With Living Economics, Peter Boettke cements his reputation not only as one of the leading Austrian economists of our time, but as one of the most compelling and engaging communicators of economic ideas. Teachers will derive inspiration from his essays and policy officials will likely gain a little humility regarding their ability to improve upon undesigned economic processes. All readers of this book will be hard pressed not to come away sharing Boettke’s enthusiasm for economics as ‘a deadly serious discipline that tackles vital questions of wealth and poverty, of life and death,’ as well as ‘an amazing framework for thinking about human behavior in the real world, including all human endeavors, . . . that is entertaining and downright fun.’”
—Susan E. Dudley, Research Professor of Public Policy and Director, Regulatory Studies Center, George Washington University; former Director, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, U.S. Office of Management and Budget

Living Economics by Peter Boettke is aptly titled. It’s all about what he received from his teachers (broadly defined) and what he, in turn, has imparted to his students. Boettke’s deep scholarship, serious reflections and passion for economics come through on every page. Accordingly, unlike most economics prose, Living Economics can be safely read before driving. Indeed, Living Economics is full of surprises—like an entire chapter on my former professor, Kenneth Boulding. Boettke’s treatment of that great economist hits the nail on the head. The book is well suited for anyone with an interest in economics and finance and should be a required supplemental text for principles of economics courses, as well as courses on the history of economic thought.”
—Steve H. Hanke, Professor of Applied Economics, Johns Hopkins University

“Peter Boettke’s book Living Economics is a spirited, passionate, and exciting tour of free-market economics.  I enjoyed every page!”
—Andrei Shleifer, Professor of Economics, Harvard University; Faculty Research Fellow, National Bureau of Economic Research

“Peter Boettke’s insightful and wide-ranging book Living Economics is not simply about teaching economics: it is a joyous exercise in teaching us through the great teachers of economics. This volume shows us how the mainline of economic teaching from Smith through Hayek to contemporary thinkers such as Buchanan and Ostrom have analyzed the core features of economic cooperation while recognizing the cognitive limits of economic and political actors, and indeed of economic analysis itself. All students of the moral sciences need to learn Boettke’s master lesson: ‘We have to understand man as a fallible yet capable chooser, who lives within an institutional framework that is historically contingent.’”
Gerald F. Gaus, James E. Rogers Professor of Philosophy, University of Arizona

“Through his scholarly and entrepreneurial work, Peter Boettke has transformed a sometimes hostile, sometimes neutral, field of economics into a thoroughgoing revival of Austrian ideas in the worlds of thought and action that is in full flower today. Living Economics reveals how Boettke has been the energetic catalyst so pivotal to this transformation. This book provides wonderful insight into how this future has been brought about.”
—Richard E. Wagner, Hobart R. Harris Professor of Economics, George Mason University

“Loaded with content well worth reading and carefully arrayed gems from history of thought, Peter Boettke’s Living Economics is literally his personal statement about living with and living through economics. But be careful as you read. Boettke’s love affair with economics is contagious. You will find yourself cheering for more.”
—Bruce Yandle, Professor of Economics Emeritus, Clemson University

There exist noteworthy works that survey economic thought and others that provide insights into current economic challenges. This highly unusual book does both at once and very successfully. Interpreting and contrasting major contributions to economics in clear prose, it also identifies the policy implications of key economic insights. Insightful, instructive, and also entertaining throughout, Peter Boettke’s Living Economics can be read profitably by academics, policy makers, students, and a wide range of other constituencies concerned about our economic institutions.”
Timur Kuran, Professor of Economics and Political Science and the Gorter Professor of Islamic Studies, Duke University

“The truly wonderful book Living Economics shows students and scholars alike why Peter Boettke is one of the most original scholars and teachers of his generation. Boettke’s goal is to form minds young and old in the way that his was formed, and thus the lessons of this book come from across the intellectual spectrum. Boettke’s masterful ability to deftly meld a variety of approaches to economics into a lens through which to view the world shows the possibilities of economics analysis at a time when its status is much in question and breathes new life into the dismal science.”
Steven G. Medema, Professor of Economics, University of Colorado, Denver

Living Economics is a treasure trove of ideas for anyone interested in communicating economics to students and the broader public. The author’s enthusiasm is evident throughout. Professor Peter Boettke shows us what he learned from some of the great figures in economics and what, from their work, he has been able to distill and elaborate as his own teaching message. At the end of the day, this book is more than about teaching economics, it is about Boettke’s ‘love affair’ with the subject.”
Mario J. Rizzo, Professor of Economics, New York University

“We have here a fascinating reflection that stems from more than a quarter century of Peter Boettke’s scholarship and masterful teaching.  One cannot close this book without a renewed appreciation of the core insights of economics that run from Adam Smith to F.A. Hayek to James Buchanan and others.  On page after page Living Economics bubbles over with enthusiasm, as Boettke shows that our tradition is intellectually rich, robust and exciting to learn.   The economic way of thinking, properly understood, studies real people.  And Boettke clearly shows that our everyday lives are at stake if the lessons of economics continue to be misunderstood by pundits, politicians and the bulk of a misguided economics profession.”
David L. Prychitko, Professor of Economics, Northern Michigan University

In Living Economics, Peter Boettke has written a compelling book that is part intellectual autobiography and part a discussion on what economics is, and how it should be taught. Professor Boettke’s love of economics comes through on every page, and the book is filled with insights on the nature of economics and how it should be presented to students. His sympathy toward free-market ideas and the Austrian school of economics comes through clearly, and much of the book is devoted to discussing the ideas and work of major scholars who have influenced him. The book is delightful to read, and will appeal to both students and teachers of economics.”
—Randall G. Holcombe, DeVoe Moore Professor of Economics, Florida State University

This set of essays is Peter Boettke at his best; they are instructive, learned, entertaining and brilliant. Not only is Living Economics a must read but a very enjoyable read for today’s economists and social scientists.”
Richard Swedberg, Professor of Sociology, Cornell University

“In Living Economics, Boettke expresses well the ‘joy of economics,’ the expansion of one’s own understanding of the process of social coordination we all benefit from, and the pure pleasure in communicating that understanding to students and others. He draws upon a deep well of teaching and guiding both undergraduate and graduate students and his lively advocacy of ‘mainline economics,’ as opposed to ‘mainstream economics,’ makes for an important read for anyone seeking to understand what economics is really all about.”
P. J. Hill, Professor Emeritus of Economics, Wheaton College

Living Economics is a fascinating discussion of the increasingly-acknowledged-as-important field of Austrian economics and its main contributors.  But more important is Peter Boettke’s lessons not only on the importance of teaching about Austrian economics but how economics should be taught generally. Living Economics makes a useful tool for both students and their teachers.”
Walter E. Williams, John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics, George Mason University

“Reading the wonderful book Living Economics by Peter Boettke made me start loving economics, and I am sure it will inspire many more readers to do the same. It makes me optimistic for the return of real economics.”
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Distinguished Professor of Finance and Risk Engineering, New York University Polytechnic Institute; author, The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable

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