Scroll down for excerpts, reviews, corrections, and information for teachers, including page notes and PPTs! Go to my foreign translations page for more info if you want to read this book in Chinese (both simplified for mainland China and traditional for Taiwan), French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Mongolian, Polish, Russian, Spanish, Thai, or Vietnamese!
Details about upcoming shows here, please contact me to bring economics comedy to your school, corporate event, or comedy club! If you are with a public high school, community college, or the armed forces, or are otherwise looking for a free show, click here.
Below is one of my favorite chapters! To download it in PDF (plus the front and back covers and Table of Contents), click here. Or you can just download the front and back covers and Table of Contents.
From the back cover of the book:
“Learning economics should be fun. Klein and Bauman make sure that it is.”
–N. Gregory Mankiw, Professor of Economics, Harvard University, and author of Principles of Economics
“Hilarity and economics are not often found together, but this book has a lot of both. It also does a great job of explaining important economic concepts simply, accurately, and entertainingly—-quite a feat.”
–Eric Maskin, 2007 Nobel Laureate in Economics
“Bauman and Klein present solid basic economics in a brilliant cartoon wrapper. The authors successfully shine a happy light on the dismal science.”
–Hugo Sonnenschein, Distinguished Service Professor and President Emeritus, University of Chicago
“This is a seriously funny book! Klein and Bauman offer an enlightening and entertaining look at why our day-to-day choices matter and how they all combine. Students will find this a great addition to their textbooks, and critics of the discipline will learn what economics is really about.”
–Diane Coyle, author of The Soulful Science
“Had Art Spiegelman and John Maynard Keynes collaborated on a comic book on economics, they could only have dreamed of coming up with something this good.”
–Jonathan A. Shayne, a.k.a. Merle Hazard, country singer and founder of Shayne & Co., LLC
Reviews on the web (I’ll add more as they cross my desk) include kind words from Univ of Chicago econ department chair Harald Uhlig (who writes on Amazon that “This is a wonderful and humorous introduction to microeconomics!”),Tim Harford (“For anybody who is genuinely interested in economics, who really wants to learn the jargon, or anyone who is starting out studying an economics course, this is just a brilliant source. It really is rigorous, but it’s also a lot of fun to read.”), Tony Cookson (“my favorite Christmas gift this year”), more from Greg Mankiw (“a painless way to learn economics”), kind words from marginalrevolution’s Tyler Cowen (“the next step in economics education”), a nice review in the Boston Globe (“uproariously funny, practical, and relevant”), another nice review in the Boston Globe (“a warp-speed, entertaining and enlightening journey through the basics”), and a mostly critical review from Bryan Caplan (with responses here and here, including my final 2 cents in the comments section).
- Steve Pratt (a self-described “Father, Husband, Fisherman, Churchgoer, and Economist” from Anchorage, Alaska) writes that there’s a mistake on page 13 (“The metaphor of the invisible hand was coined by Adam Smith in 1776…”) because Adam Smith first mentioned the Invisible Hand in The Theory of Moral Sentiments, which dates from 1759. This is absolutely correct, at least if Wikipedia is to be believed.
- On page 20 (and again on page 161), the material on the chalkboard should address the possibility (in terms of mathematics if not reality!) that optimal output occurs with an infinitely high value of output q, for example if revenue is 3q and costs are 2q. So the text should be corrected to say something like “either q=0 or q=∞ or the firm…” or maybe even better as “either q=0 or q→∞ or the firm…”
- The annuity formula on p34 is not wrong, but it would be easier and clearer without the compound fraction, i.e., as (x/r)*etc. If I get a chance to change it in a 2nd edition I will!
- Page 137 (at the top) has “equilibrium” mis-spelled as “equilibium”. Thanks to Jared Powers for finding this mistake in 2020, 10 years after the book came out!
Information for teachers
If you ‘re a college or high school instructor looking to adopt the cartoon book(s) for a class and you don’t want to shell out $12 you can click here to get a desk copy (free if you order 20 copies) or an examination copy for about $5. Send a note on school letterhead to the address in the link and ask for a copy of The Cartoon Introduction to Economics, Volume One: Microeconomics, ISBN 978-0809094813 and/or The Cartoon Introduction to Economics, Volume Two: Macroeconomics, ISBN 978-0809033614.
Also FYI both cartoon books should be available at a steep discount (possibly even free!) as part of a Worth Publishers package deal with intro texts by Krugman/Wells, Cowen/Tabbarok, or Chiang. For more info contact WorthEconomics@worthpub.com, and if you have any trouble please contact me.