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Freakonomics Cd Unabridged [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio CD]

Steven D Levitt
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Freakonomics Rev Ed Unabridged Low Price Cd: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything Freakonomics Rev Ed Unabridged Low Price Cd: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything 3.8 out of 5 stars (18)
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Book Description

March 31 2005

Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? What kind of impact did Roe v. Wade have on violent crime?

These may not sound like typical questions for an economist to ask. But Steven D. Levitt is not a typical economist. He is a much-heralded scholar who studies the riddles of everyday life -- from cheating and crime to sports and child rearing -- and whose conclusions regularly turn the conventional wisdom on its head. Thus the new field of study contained in this book: Freakonomics.

Levitt and co-author Stephen J. Dubner show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives -- how people get what they want or need especially when other people want or need the same thing. In Freakonomics, they set out to explore the hidden side of ... well, everything. The inner workings of a crack gang. The truth about real-estate agents. The secrets of the Ku Klux Klan.

What unites all these stories is a belief that the modern world is even more intriguing than we think. All it takes is a new way of looking. Steven Levitt, through devilishly clever and clear-eyed thinking, shows how to see through all the clutter.

Read by Stephen J. Dubner


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From Amazon

Economics is not widely considered to be one of the sexier sciences. The annual Nobel Prize winner in that field never receives as much publicity as his or her compatriots in peace, literature, or physics. But if such slights are based on the notion that economics is dull, or that economists are concerned only with finance itself, Steven D. Levitt will change some minds. In Freakonomics (written with Stephen J. Dubner), Levitt argues that many apparent mysteries of everyday life don't need to be so mysterious: They could be illuminated and made even more fascinating by asking the right questions and drawing connections. For example, Levitt traces the drop in violent crime rates to a drop in violent criminals and, digging further, to the Roe v. Wade decision that preempted the existence of some people who would be born to poverty and hardship. Elsewhere, by analyzing data gathered from innercity Chicago drug-dealing gangs, Levitt outlines a corporate structure much like McDonald's, where the top bosses make great money while scores of underlings make something below minimum wage. And in a section that may alarm or relieve worried parents, Levitt argues that parenting methods don't really matter much and that a backyard swimming pool is much more dangerous than a gun. These enlightening chapters are separated by effusive passages from Dubner's 2003 profile of Levitt in The New York Times Magazine, which led to the book being written. In a book filled with bold logic, such back-patting veers Freakonomics, however briefly, away from what Levitt actually has to say. Although maybe there's a good economic reason for that too, and we're just not getting it yet. --John Moe

Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner Answer The Amazon.com Significant Seven

Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, author and co-author of this season's bestselling quirky hit, Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything, graciously answered the Amazon.com Significant Seven questions that we like to run by every author.

Levitt and Dubner answer the Amazon.com Significant Seven questions

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Though the idea of listening to an economics text may bring to mind nightmarish visions of incomprehensible facts, figures and graphs, this audiobook is refreshingly accessible and engrossing. Journalist Dubner reads with just the right mix of enthusiasm and awe, revealing juicy morsels of wisdom on everything from what sumo wrestlers and teachers have in common (a propensity to cheat) to whether parents can really push their kids to greatness by buying them Baby Einstein toys and enlisting them in numerous before- and after-school activities (not really). The only section that doesn't translate well to the format is the final one on naming conventions. The lists of "White Girl Names" and "Black Girl Names," and "Low-End" names and "High-End" names can be mind-numbing, though the text that breaks up these lists will intrigue. Overall, however, these unusual investigations by Levitt, the "rogue" of the subtitle, make for meaty—and entertaining—listening.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Anyone living in the United States in the early 1990s and paying even a whisper of attention to the nightly news or a daily paper could be forgiven for having been scared out of his skin. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but /and Light April 27 2005
Format:Hardcover
Calling this a book on economics hasn't scared people away - with the book #3 on the Amazon.com listings and #5 here on .ca, people are clearly buying into the author's quirky insights into the world around us.
Freakonomics is an interesting collection of observations, never conceding to any agenda whatsoever. It's entertaining, but never really takes you anywhere. Personally, I would have hoped that it would at least attempt to spur interest in economics and econometric methods, but in the end it reads more like an episode of Seinfeld - a book about, well, nothing.
It's an easy read, achievable on a single rainy day, and certainly not challenging for the average reader with no economics background. But I would encourage folks who do pick it up to consider the usefulness of the correlation/causality distinction and the methods of analysis beyond the description here. Not many of you will pick up an economics or statistics text because of this, but maybe if there were more books like this which make it interesting and applicable in our daily lives, we would all have a better understanding and appreciation for our strange little world at large.
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2.0 out of 5 stars No cover Oct. 22 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Bought this book, thinking it would have the case around it-it didn't. Looks old and used
Book itself is a great read. Definitely recommend reading it.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A brief summary of his studies. Oct. 5 2005
By iRon
Format:Hardcover
It was a good read, but no intellectual ride. Steven Levitts has published many intriguing research pieces. The chapters in Freakonomics were simply a presentation of his recent or most interesting works. If you are interested in his studies, all of his materials are accessible on the internet in a much more detailed fashion. Freakonomics is just a table of content... not worth a buy.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Does not deliver Nov. 17 2006
Format:Hardcover
I got this book b/c of the hype and reviews. Unfortunatly it was a big disappointment. The book kept making statistical conlusions between things that really don't matter. Some of the chapeters were interesting but over all I would not recomend this book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Freakonomics Oct. 22 2006
Format:Hardcover
so i picked up this book after all the rave reviews and read it as i do most books in one sitting. Unfortunately, it didnt deliver.....a lot of their conclusions are based on statistics (stats 101 will teach anyone the unreliabilty of stats); their overview of general topics is just not general enough for me, a little bit too cynical and try hard for me. May be a generational gap.....but all in all its not a bad read....at the least it does promote thought, which is always a good thing to end with in these types of books.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Provocative and entertaining Sept. 11 2006
By S. Iroe
Format:Hardcover
After shunning it on the bestsellers shelves of the bookstore for a long time I finally decided to browse through this book when I was visiting my friend's home. I immediately became engrossed in it. Freakonomics, without being philosophical, presents a new way of looking at things (purportedly - but not quite -- everything). The authors do a great job in making the book flow from cover to cover with a continuous barrage of startling conclusions. You might not agree with everything that they are saying but you will definitely feel a jolt in the way you look at some issues. I found a few problems in their approach here and there, e.g. I thought the authors were overly cynical of "experts", also their reliance on statistics in drawing conclusions about people and society could benefit from scrutiny - but then we'd be getting too philosophical and their approach in this regard is in keeping with current practices in the social sciences anyway.

If the book can be read with a grain of salt however, there is a lot to be benefited from it. I think one should keep in mind when reading this book is that more than the particular issues that are addressed what's important is the *way* of looking at things. I can't stress this enough because I have heard people complain about one particular example or another as a fatal flaw in the book; if you fall into this trap you're missing the boat in my opinion. I think the book can be read profitably by just reading the introduction and one or two of the other chapters.

I could have done without the hype in the book, the book has a lot going for it, and it didn't need all the hype in the introduction and throughout. Also, I found Dubner's rather incessant hero-worshipping of Levitt rather annoying. These are minor issues though in comparison to what you'll get from reading this book. I recommend this book. I am pretty sure I will reread it.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars don't say it, show it. Jan. 30 2006
Format:Hardcover
It took quite a while to get into the actual content of the book as there was a lengthy intro, and self congratulatory citations before each chapter.
There has clearly been some great research put into this book, but I think a couple of papers, or magazine articles would have sufficed.
The last chapter has the appearance of rushed homework, with several pages of lists of babies names, poorly laid out on page, and a laboured conclusion that one graphic 4 pages earlier would have expressed so much clearer.
Also, the summing up remarks will have no relevance for anybody outside the USA.
Overall, the book is smart and explored interesting correlations, but for the amount of reference there is to how great these authors can express their ideas, there is often very little evidence of it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Freakin Amazing Nov. 17 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is some fun book to read. I enjoyed every page of it, although not as much the grim statistics for the probability of dying in a road accident for a driver versus a pedestrian. Are you trying to convince me to start driving a car instead of saving few cubic meters of fresh air? :)) But then what's a car pollution compared to that of a cow? It's all in the book there.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Freakonomics
I ordered this book as a gift. It arrived in good condition and within a reasonable period of time. I would order from this supplier again.
Published on Oct. 18 2010 by Don
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Entertainment, Questionable Motives!?
To me, the purpose of this book was mere SALES!!! The "research" seems very off and lacks thourough observation under DIFFERENT controlled situations. Read more
Published on Nov. 29 2009 by Wesley Tucker
5.0 out of 5 stars Freaky Economics
Wow, I had no idea what I was getting into when I got this book. Expecting a "dry" and boring tome on economics, I instead got a really, really great read that turned me on to how... Read more
Published on Oct. 20 2006 by Joe Schmo
5.0 out of 5 stars Freaky Economics
Wow, I had no idea what I was getting into when I got this book. Expecting a "dry" and boring tome on economics, I instead got a really, really great read that turned me on to how... Read more
Published on Oct. 13 2006 by Jo Schmo
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting, unusual and thought-provoking
Freakonomics is broad spectrum, entertaining and more than anything else thought provoking. The questions of the authors may seem unusual at first but they reveal that at first... Read more
Published on Oct. 2 2006 by B. V. Michael
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
There is a reason why this book is a best seller.....it provides you with an alternate way of looking at the world. Read more
Published on Sept. 27 2006 by Andrew Jc Armitage
5.0 out of 5 stars One of our picks
Our book club is an eclectic bunch---we pick everything from great fiction to "pure fun" books, books such as the Oprah pick "Night," to a fun romp such as McCrae's "Katzenjammer,"... Read more
Published on Sept. 7 2006 by North Country Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars Great example of critical thinking but still take with a grain of salt
This book looks at some every day things in our society with a critical eye and with in mind the principals of economics but in a way that it is accessible to everybody. Read more
Published on Sept. 3 2006 by George Jost
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