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ISBF Recommends: Top 6 Books to Read on Economics

Posted on November 26, 2020 by Umer Fayaz  | Academics | Blog

If you are passionate about Economics, then you must find it interesting to read about what goes into the making of great economies and the reasons behind their fall. Economics is one the most widely pursued subjects in the realm of Social Sciences. Owing to its diverse applicability, the subject offers a myriad of career opportunities and that itself has made it a career of choice for many. The popularity of the subject lies in the fact that it has something for everyone. Here’s a list of the top 5 books that you should read to get a deeper insight into the world of Economics:

Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

The book uses a unique approach to understand some of the pressing issues of today’s economic world and their relation to daily and often non-economic activities. Authors Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner use a non-traditional approach to give a whole new perspective to economics. The book is thorough and provocative at the same time. Unlike other books that discuss major events that drive economic change, this one shows how a chain of small events and decisions of an individual can have a ripple effect on an economy.

The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith

Perhaps the most widely read book in Economics, The Wealth of Nations gives a holistic understanding of the evolution of global economics over the last 300 years. In this book, while advocating for free trade, Smith argues that individuals are capable of regulating prices for their own goods and services. He discusses how government interference in the market results in the disharmony of an economy. Smith also explains how individual needs to fulfill self-interest results in social benefit, for which he used the term “Invisible Hand”. The timeliness of the book is unmatched which makes it a masterpiece text in Economics.

Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt

Published in 1946, the book gives a very comprehensive outline of economics without going into jargon. The book uses examples from daily life to elaborate on complex concepts which makes it an essential text for anyone planning on understanding Economics. Hazlitt in this book destroys myths surrounding historic economic events that were promoted by public figures and economists alike. Using a simple and crisp writing style, the book offers an amalgam of fundamental and advanced concepts in Economics.

Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman

How can we benefit from the promise of government, while avoiding the threat it poses to individual freedom? Author Milton Friedman in this book offers an alternative thought to the overly discussed topic of capitalism. His immensely influential economic philosophy paves a way for new arguments one of which is that competitive capitalism serves as both a device for achieving economic freedom and a necessary condition for political freedom. Apart from this, he discusses at length issues like Alleviation of Poverty, Social Welfare Measures, The Distribution of Income, Occupational Licensure, Capitalism and Discrimination which are also the titles of the individual chapters in the book.

Argumentative Indian by Amartya Sen

This book by Indian Nobel laureate Amartya Sen is a series of critical essays on economics. It is highly informative and has an abundance of examples from the teachings and lives of emperors. The essays discuss India’s history while primarily focusing on intellectual pluralism and the culture of public debate. The 16 essays in it set the tone for debate on Indian identity, with class and the status of women, with the Indian diaspora, and with India and the West.

Other Important Readings

The above-mentioned books, among others, are the gold-standard in the field of Economics. Prestigious institutions around the world have these books as essential readings for their programmes in Economics. Indian School of Business and Finance, being an affiliate center for the University of London, offers BSc Economics programme as per the academic directions from London School of Economics. Apart from the updated curriculum, the programme encourages students to read diverse texts to give them a broader view of the subject. Here’s is the list of other important books that you should read on Economics.

The Emergence of Globalism by Or Rosenboim

Essays in Persuasion by John Maynard Keynes

The Economic Consequences of the Peace by John Maynard Keynes

Money Changes Everything by William Goetzmann

Saving Capitalism from the Capitalists by Luigi Zingales & Raghuram G. Rajan

The Worldly Philosophers by Robert L Heilbroner

Fault Lines by Raghuram G Rajan

Essays in Economics by James Tobin

Origin of Wealth by Eric D. Beinhocker

Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond

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