Walking on Sunshine

Alan Beattie – False Economy – 2010/TBR

The Back of the Book: Why do some economies and societies crash and burn, while others are buffeted by storms and yet still recovery?

Can we analyze the fates of countries in a way that will help us analyze the fault lines and successes that can make or break a civilization, a city, or a culture?  In False Economy, Alan Beattie weaves together elements of economics, history, politics, and human stories, revealing that governments and countries make concrete choices that determine their destinies.  He opens larger questions about the choices countries make, why they make them or are driven to make them, and what these choices can mean for the future of our global economy as we go forward into uncharted territory.

Economic history involves forcing together disciplines that fall naturally in different directions, the universal explanation versus the individual narrative.  But Beattie has writer a lively ad lucid book that engagingly and thought-provokingly marries the two disciplines and reveals their interdependence.  Along the way, you’ll discover why Africa doesn’t grow cocaine why our asparagus comes from Peru, why your keyboard spells QWERTY, ad why giant pandas are living on borrowed time …

Beattie uses extraordinary stories of economic triumph and disaster to explain how some countries have gone wrong while others have gone right, and why it’s so difficult to change course once you’re on the path to ruin.

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