HONORS 135 - Ideas in Honors
Section: 005 What They Don't Tell You in Econ 101
Term: FA 2007
Subject: Honors Program (HONORS)
Department: LSA Honors
Credits:
1
Other:
Honors
Class Misc Info:
Minicourse meeting Sept. 17-Nov. 29. (Drop/Add deadline=Sept. 28.)..
Advisory Prerequisites:
First-year standing in the Honors Program.
Grading:
Mandatory credit/no credit.
Repeatability:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Did you know that Adam Smith only mentioned the “invisible hand” twice in a lifetime of scholarship? Have you ever wondered if our measure of “Standard of Living”—annual GDP per capita—might not be the best indicator of how well a population actually lives? Are you interested in how rapid globalization is challenging long held assumptions about the worth of trade and comparative advantage?

In this class, we’ll put a little pressure on the basic storyline of introductory economics. From examining the writings of Adam Smith to investigating the environmental impact of the “free movement of goods,” we’ll dip into a wide range of fields: psychology, biology, philosophy, environmental study, and of course economics.

While some introductory exposure to economics— in high school, summer school, or college—is a good prerequisite to this course, no math, psychology, biology, or for that matter any other background is at all necessary for this class. All one need bring to the table is curiosity!

Sample Reading List:

• Short selections from Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations and his Theory of Moral Sentiments.

• Selected chapters from Daniel Nettle’s Happiness: The Science Behind Your Smile.

• Nadia Mustafa, "What About Gross National Happiness?", Time, January 10, 2005.

• Selected readings from http://www.bhutanstudies.org.bt/publications/gnh/gnh.htm

• Louis Uchitelle, “To Mend the Flaws in Trade,” New York Times, January 30, 2007.

• Selections from Dani Rodrik’s Has Globalization Gone Too Far?

• Selections from Andres Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, and Jeff Speck’s Suburban Nation.


Sample topics to be covered:

• Adam Smith and the Invisible Hand: Sympathy and Economics

• Wanting vs. Liking: What psychology and biology have to tell us about utility and rational actor theory

• Standard of Living: What does it mean? An examination of Bhutan, E. Germany, UN indexes, and you.

• “Free” movement of goods: transportation subsidies, trade, and the environment.

• Tech and Trade: Has the world changed?

• Psychology, economics, and inequality: it’s all about keeping up with the Joneses.

HONORS 135 - Ideas in Honors
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
P
20349
Closed
0
 
-
W 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on Sept. 19
002 (SEM)
P
24158
Open
6
6LSA Hnrs Y1
-
Tu 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 11
003 (SEM)
P
20350
Open
1
3LSA Hnrs Y1
-
Tu 5:00PM - 6:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 18
004 (SEM)
P
20351
Closed
0
1LSA Hnrs Y1
-
W 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 12
005 (SEM)
P
21528
Closed
0
2LSA Hnrs Y1
-
M 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 17
006 (SEM)
P
21537
Open
6
6LSA Hnrs Y1
-
W 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 12
007 (SEM)
P
22823
Open
2
2LSA Hnrs Y1
-
Tu 6:00PM - 7:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 18
008 (SEM)
P
24159
Open
2
3LSA Hnrs Y1
-
M 4:00PM - 5:00PM
Note: note: class starts meeting on September 10
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