Economics and American Industry

Economics and American Industry

Economics and American Industry

Economics and American Industry

Excerpt

It has been my experience that the two main segments of modern economics differ greatly in their teachability. Macroeconomic analysis and the public finance and monetary economics that usually accompany it generate ample interest among undergraduates. The importance of these subjects to major problems of current national concern is obvious to most, and their conclusions and shortcomings can be easily illustrated in terms of well-known recent events. On the other hand, microeconomic analysis often seems far removed from reality to the typical undergraduate. Cost and distribution theory strike him as complex analytical structures developed in an ivory tower with little or no useful application. The situation is not much better for those students who are so impressed by theory that they swallow it whole. Their picture of the economic world is surely imperfect.

This book is an attempt to make the microeconomic analysis at once more palatable and more useful to the typical undergraduate by combining a systematic presentation of price and distribution theory with case studies of appropriate industries. I hope that the book can be used in three types of courses: 1. It might serve as the main text or as a supplement in a second term of economics after a one-term survey of economic institutions and macroeconomics. The term preceding this book might consist of the material in Chapters 1 through 20 of Samuelson, Chapters 1 through 19 of Bach, Chapters 1 through 16 of Harriss, Chapters 1 through 13 of Koivisto, or similar subject matter in other principles texts. 2. It might serve as a text for or supplement to many intermediate theory courses. 3. It might be the basic text in industrial organization courses if the case study approach . . .

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