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Dollars And Sex: How Economics Influences Sex And Love [Hardcover]

Marina Adshade
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Feb. 15 2013

In Dollars and Sex, economist Marina Adshade converts economic theory into a sexy science by applying the principles of market forces to matters of love and the libido. As she does in her hugely popular blog of the same name, Adshade unlocks the mysteries behind our actions, thoughts and preferences using engaging research and economic analysis – and no small dose of humour. The result is a fascinating look at how the most important choices we make are influenced by the interplay between sexual drive, gender, love, power and economic forces.

In Dollars and Sex, you’ll find answers to such questions as:

- Is modern marriage just an opportunity to consume more goods and services?

- What is the relationship between rising rates of casual sex and the widening earning gap?

- How do we sabotage our chances of finding a mate when dating online?

Ultimately Adshade shows that every option, every decision, and every outcome in matters of sex and love is better understood through economics.

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"Economists may seem soulless, unlikely guides to affairs of the heart. But Dollars and Sex, a delightful book by Marina Adshade…may convince you otherwise…she summarizes her own research and that of other economists, and shows that forces of supply and demand indeed loom large in the implicit market for romance.." - Robert Frank, The New York Times

"Adshade’s strong suit is clear—she deftly relays the basics of economics ... using statistically observed behavior, and shades her position with astute reporting on external cultural and economic conditions. The content of the book springs from an undergraduate course Adshade teaches called “Economics of Sex and Love,” so readers unfamiliar with Econ 101 (or Sex 101 for that matter) needn’t fear—Adshade’s an understandable and engaging teacher." - Publisher's Weekly

"Adshade has compiled the titillating facts and figures from her course and her blog on into her first book Dollars and Sex. You may have never thought you'd read about fiscal theories for pleasure, but Adshade shows how the very compelling topics of love and sex are better understood through the lens of economics.." - Book of the Week Everything Zoomer

"As a writer, [Adshade] is blissfully unsentimental about her material. She’s interested in people’s choices, not in judging them. And by viewing everything through a market lens, she avoids the kind of panicky moralizing about sex, love or marriage that infects other writing on the subject...The pleasure of reading Dollars and Sex, in other words, is that Adshade doesn't have and agenda to push, nor any Gladwellian "Aha!" moments to neatly package. The book is a clever collection of small conversation-ready revelations packaged in an accessible way." - Canadian Business Magazine

"In Dollars and Sex, Adshade uses everything from prostitution to online dating to demonstrate how economics work in practice. The result is a book that is both provocative, and informative." - Winnipeg Free Press

About the Author

Marina Adshade has spent the last ten years teaching economics and engaging in original economic research. In 2008, she launched an undergraduate course titled Economics of Sex and Love, which invited her students to approach questions of sex and love through an economist’s lens. The class was an immediate hit with students and, by the time the first term started, had generated international media attention. She has a Ph.D. from Queen’s University and currently teaches at the Vancouver School of Economics at the University of British Columbia.

As a writer, Dr. Adshade hit her groove the moment she launched Dollars and Sex on the online knowledge forum Big Think (named the number one news and information website by Time Magazine in 2011) and almost immediately became one of the best-read series on that site, attracting over three quarters of a million unique visitors. Since October 2012 Dollars and Sex has been posted on Dr. Adshade’s personal homepage at

Dr. Adshade writes regularly for the The Globe and Mail newspaper and Canadian Business Magazine and has made numerous TV appearances on CTV and CBC, interviews on CBC Radio and National Public Radio (US), online panel discussions, international and domestic print media (including the Daily Mail, London, and Reuters) and podcasts in Canada and the US.

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read! Feb. 5 2014
I loved this book from start to finish, and recommended it to my mum only a few hours after I started reading it and constantly educate (and annoy) my friends with all the interesting research and ideas in the book!

Whether you're interested in economics or in relationships and social interactions in general this book is a great read. One of the best things it does is take many technical and potentially confusing academic papers and simplify the research and results into a easy to read and interesting format. For example, I now know that in order to make more money as an educated woman I should keep my last name instead of take my husbands. And that I have a better chance on the marriage market if I move out of the city (where there's a surplus of women looking for love) and move to rural areas!

Often the way I describe this book to friends is a "Freakonomics of Sex and Love" in that it takes an economic lens to marriage, sex and relationships and presents it in a non-technical, occasionally humorous and interesting format.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dollars and Sex March 20 2013
By Sarah
In Dollars and Sex, Dr. Marina Adshade describes the costs and benefits of relationships, marriage, and divorce. Her book explores the great mysteries of relationships, extramarital affairs, beer prices affecting risky behaviour and cohabitation before marriage resulting in divorce. This was a great book. It was interspersed with short vignettes and research that keep the reader engaged with the content.
Hope there is a squeal!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Conversation Topic March 17 2013
By Monique
I flew through this book in a few days because it was both fascinating and entertaining. It explores sexual behaviour through the eyes of economics and comes to some surprising (and amusing) conclusions.

I particularly liked the part where author Marina Adshade re-writes the traditional wedding vow with humour and brutal honesty.

Read it. You will never look at your relationship choices the same way again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dollars and Sex! March 10 2013
This book uses the power of economic analysis to provide insights into dating and relationships. The title (Dollars and Sex) is attention grabbing, but don't be fooled! This book takes an investigative approach that relays on empirical evidence. All to say, the advise and lessons revealed here are persuasive because they are based on economic data from around the world. Many times while reading this book, I had to pause and share with whoever was around. The author presents findings that challenge your ideas about relationships and the world of dating. This book is extremely well written and is an easy read for non-economists. I highly recommend this book to anyone who who wants a good read that mixes fun and facts!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Sexonomics 101 March 9 2013
Fantastic book! Adshade uses academic research as well as personal anecdotes to show how sexual behaviour is influenced by the forces of supply and demand. From the university hook-up culture, to the online dating market, to the use of condoms among senior citizens, there is lots here to ponder, and tons of saucy facts to share with your friends. Highly recommended!
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