Hey everybody. It’s been a while since we curated a book-list on the Curious Economist, and so we decided to take some time out to make an important list. It’s called 10 Economics Books You Must Read Before You Die. Sure, you needn’t read them all at once, but keep this list handy.
1 – The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
Adam Smith’s primer on economics offers a theoretical & historical case for free trade. His writing is influenced by prominent thinkers after him – from David Ricardo to Karl Marx. He emphasises the importance of the division of labor to economic progress and opposes the idea of mercantile monopolistic practices.
2 – The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money by John Maynard Keynes
John Maynard Keynes work drastically altered the way economics was looked at in the modern world. In his most famous work, Keynes critiques the laissez-faire policies of his day, particularly the proposition that a normally functioning market economy would bring full employment.
3 – Freakonomics by Stephen J Dubner & Steve Levitt
The premise of Freakonomics is simple – If morality represents how we would like the world to work, then economics represents how it actually does work.
4 – Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman and his views on Capitalism and the treats governments pose to individual freedom are the stuff of legends. In fact, his Q&A videos on YouTube are an absolute treat. Check his work out.
5 – Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt
This book is recommended for anyone interested in understanding the “free market” theory that government intervention in the markets, no matter how well meaning the intent, almost always leads to negative consequences down the road.
6 – Why Nations Fail by James A Robinson & Daron Acemoglu
Brilliant and engagingly written, Why Nations Fail answers the question that has stumped the experts for centuries: Why are some nations rich and others poor, divided by wealth and poverty, health and sickness, food and famine?
7 – The Armchair Economist by Steven Landsberg
This book is a wonderful little nugget for the noneconomist. It’s simple, easy-to-read and comprehend, and a great first book if you want to be inducted in to the big bad world of economics.
8 – Naked Economics by Charles Wheelan
9 – The Worldly Philosophers by Robert Heilbroner
Robert L. Heilbroner provides a new theme that connects thinkers as diverse as Adam Smith and Karl Marx – namely, the search to understand how a capitalist society works.
10 – Human Action by Ludwig von Mises
Consumers are not victims of capitalism, but kings of the market that exists only to provide things for which we, those consumers, are willing to pay. We end up paying for what we want and not having to pay for what we don’t want. This is what the Ludwig von Mises wishes to enunciate in this beautiful book.