Mark Twain, meet Gordon Tullock

Source: Cato Unbound
by Michelle Vachris

“As Cecil Bohanon and I have argued elsewhere, despite the vast chasm between the economics and literature disciplines, there exist gains from trade between the two. Tyler Cowen has explained that novels are similar to economic models in that the stories usually trace through shocks to the system of the characters. Therefore we and our students can learn a lot about the economy and economic theories by reading works of literature, and vice versa. In particular there are plenty of examples of what Skwire calls ‘public choice sensibility’ in literature that predates the development of public choice theory. To get us started, Skwire provides us with an introduction to Shakespearean coverage of public choice sensibility. I’d like to extend this train of thought by offering up Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner’s book A Gilded Age, A Tale of Today.” (03/13/17)