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A Tool for Critically Understanding Society
9th Edition

Tom Riddell, Jean Shackelford, Stephen Stamos, Geoffrey Schneider

Apr 2010, Paperback, 656 pages
ISBN13: 9780131368491
ISBN10: 0131368494
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Economics: A Tool for Critically Understanding Society, 9/e, offers a clear, simple introduction to economic analysis in order to help readers use economic concepts to analyze today’s issues, think about everyday decisions, and examine their preconceived ideas and belief. The authors take a historical perspective, presenting economic theories and their connections to a wide variety of schools of thought.

Part 1: Economic Methodology, History, and the Development of Modern Economic Thought

Chapter 1: Economics as a Social Science
Chapter 2: The Evolution of Economic Systems
Chapter 3: Adam Smith, Classical Liberalism, and the Division of Labor
Chapter 4: Karl Marx and the Socialist Critique of Capitalism
Chapter 5: The Rise and Fall of Laissez-Faire in the U.S. Economy

Part 2: Microeconomics

Chapter 6: Scarcity: “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”
Chapter 7: The Theory of Markets
Chapter 8: Perfect Competition and Efficiency
Chapter 9: Noncompetitive Markets and Inefficiency
Chapter 10: Resource Markets and the Distribution of Income
Chapter 11: Corporations and Labor Unions
Chapter 12: The Economic Role of Government

Part 3: Macroeconomics

Chapter 13: Macroeconomics: Issues and Problems
Chapter 14: Macroeconomic Theory: Classical and Keynesian Models
Chapter 15: Fiscal Policy: Government Spending and Taxation
Chapter 16: Financial Markets, Money, and Monetary Policy
Chapter 17: Aggregate Demand and Aggregate Supply
Chapter 18: Unemployment, Inflation, and Stabilization Policy in a Global Economy

Part 4: International Economics and Finance

Chapter 19: International Trade and Interdependence
Chapter 20: International Finance
Chapter 21: The Economics of Developing Nations
Chapter 22: Modern Economic Systems

  • A heterodox approach includes perspectives often missing from other economics textbooks—without emphasizing one perspective over the others. Students are exposed to a greater variety of schools of thought that encourage debate and independent thought—two critical elements for learning.
  • A strong historical perspective traces the development of modern economic thought, beginning with the evolution of economic systems, and connecting the stories of Adam Smith, classical economics, Keynesian economics, and Marxism to current economic policies and debates.
  • Part 3 focuses on the latest issues and debates, such as policies regarding the global economy, race and gender, and the environment.
  • Thinking Critically sections, featured at the end of each part, present both sides of current economic issues and ask students to use their economic tools to analyze the arguments and come to their own conclusions.
  • Big Picture boxes provide accessible explanations of key concepts, including the Aggregate Demand/Aggregate Supply model, so students see the big picture without needing to know all the components of the model first.