Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘lit and econ’

Shop Talk |

The problem with stories

We love TED here at FWR–which, in case you haven’t encountered it before, you’re welcome, and I hope you didn’t have any work to do this month. This is an old TED talk, but one I hadn’t heard before and one I’ve been thinking about–particularly because it challenges the concept of storytelling. In his TED talk, writer/economist Tyler Cowen talks about why stories make him nervous and why we should be suspicious of stories. Here’s a snippet of the transcript: I was told to come here and tell you all stories, but what I’d like to do is instead tell […]

Shop Talk |

The Eras of Teaching Creative Writing

  In his 1994 book Peddling Prosperity, the economist Paul Krugman offered an analogy that I have never been able to forget. He suggests that modern economics, which he fondly calls a “primitive science,” has reached about the same level of development that medicine reached in 1900. Medical researchers had, by that time [1900], accumulated a great deal of information about the human body and its workings, and were capable of giving some critically usefully advice about how to avoid disease. They could not, however, cure very much. Indeed, the doctor / essayist Lewis Thomas tells us that the most […]

Reviews |

A Young Man’s Guide to Late Capitalism, by Peter Mountford

A Young Man’s Guide to Late Capitalism is not your grandfather’s expat novel. In this smart debut, Peter Mountford rolls up his sleeves and delivers a crash course in Latin American history, contemporary economics, and international politics—all within a page-turning story about the dreams and gaffes of a twenty-something American working for an unscrupulous hedge fund in Bolivia.