Economics: Institutions and Analysis

Economics:  Institutions and Analysis

by Gerson Antell and Walter Harris
New York: Amsco School Publications, 1997
Third edition
649 pp.

Rating: D

This book is clearly written and does well with the basics. Unfortunately, on many controversial policy issues, the authors stop being even-handed and provide their own conclusions as unchallenged truth. For example, the economics of competition and monopoly is a hotly debated field, but one would scarcely know it from this book. The authors seem confused and unaware how history affects their arguments. Both the premise that labor market discrimination is "a major cause of poverty" and the conclusion that affirmative action is the solution are highly contested points in economics literature. But the student hears only one side of the issue. Perhaps the worst of all the major sections of the book is its treatment of the business cycle. The students are presented with the discredited Keynesian view with almost no hint of skepticism. They never learn any of the devastating criticism to which it has been subjected for more than fifty years.

A more detailed critique is available.