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The Rational Optimist : How Prosperity Evolves
by Matt Ridley


Overview -

"Ridley writes with panache, wit, and humor and displays remarkable ingenuity in finding ways to present complicated materials for the lay reader." -- Los Angeles Times

In a bold and provocative interpretation of economic history, Matt Ridley, the New York Times -bestselling author of Genome and The Red Queen , makes the case for an economics of hope, arguing that the benefits of commerce, technology, innovation, and change--what Ridley calls cultural evolution--will inevitably increase human prosperity.  Read more...


 
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More About The Rational Optimist by Matt Ridley
 
 
 
Overview

"Ridley writes with panache, wit, and humor and displays remarkable ingenuity in finding ways to present complicated materials for the lay reader." -- Los Angeles Times

In a bold and provocative interpretation of economic history, Matt Ridley, the New York Times-bestselling author of Genome and The Red Queen, makes the case for an economics of hope, arguing that the benefits of commerce, technology, innovation, and change--what Ridley calls cultural evolution--will inevitably increase human prosperity. Fans of the works of Jared Diamond (Guns, Germs, and Steel), Niall Ferguson (The Ascent of Money), and Thomas Friedman (The World Is Flat) will find much to ponder and enjoy in The Rational Optimist.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780061452055
  • ISBN-10: 006145205X
  • Publisher: HarperTorch
  • Publish Date: May 2010
  • Page Count: 438
  • Dimensions: 9.26 x 6.62 x 1.41 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Business & Economics > Economic History
Books > Social Science > General

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page 40.
  • Review Date: 2010-04-12
  • Reviewer: Staff

Ideas “have sex,” in Ridley’s schema; they follow a process of natural selection of their own, and as long as they continue to do so, there is reason to retire apocalyptic pessimism about the future of our species. Erstwhile zoologist, conservationist, and journalist, Ridley (The Red Queen) posits that as long as civilization engages in “exchange and specialization,” we will be able to reinvent ourselves and responsibly use earthly resources ad infinitum. Humanity’s collective intelligence will save the day, just as it has over the centuries. Ridley puts current perceptions about violence, wealth, and the environment into historical perspective, reaching back thousands of years to advocate global free trade, smaller government, and the use of fossil fuels. He confidently takes on the experts, from modern sociologists who fret over the current level of violence in the world to environmentalists who disdain genetically modified crops. An ambitious and sunny paean to human ingenuity, this is an argument for why “ambitious optimism is morally mandatory.” (June)

 
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