International Economics

International Economics

International Economics

International Economics

Excerpt

The learning of any task or body of knowledge is greatly facilitated if the student is properly motivated and knows the ultimate rewards of his labor, if he has a clear notion of the requirements he must meet to attain these rewards, and if he knows the road that will take him to his goal. In this introductory chapter we will lay the groundwork for the study of this book by analyzing the usefulness of international economics for students with many different life careers ahead of them. We will also describe the broad intellectual content of the subject of international economics and explain the strategy of exposition and general philosophy to be followed in this book.

Why Study International Economics?

Students take courses and acquire skills and knowledge for many different reasons, most of which are applicable to the study of international economics. First (and somewhat cynically), they take many courses simply because they need to fulfill certain requirements for graduation, which itself is only a means to high starting salaries and lifetime earnings. International economics, of course, does help to fulfill course requirements, but students who take it for this reason alone have been ill advised, for there are many much less rigorous and less substantial subjects with which these formal obligations can be met.

A second purpose for taking courses is the acquisition of skills and knowledge that will be directly useful in earning a living later on in life. International economics teaches very few skills or knowledge which can be used directly in this manner, except to the relatively small proportion of students who will become professional economists and who will work in . . .

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