Stories involving economics put the topic into context and make concepts easy to understand and remember.
Supply and demand are related. When one goes up the other goes down. In college, I remember being confused by the countless number of similar graphs illustrating this concept. Despite the fact that the concept is simple, when put into word problems in exam format I was more confused than ever. Like history, I'm finding economics much simpler and enjoyable the second time around.
One excellent source of economics concepts are the books written in story format by Russell Roberts.
How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life: An Unexpected Guide to Human Nature and Happiness
The Invisible Heart: An Economic Romance
The Choice: A Fable of Free Trade and Protection (3rd Edition)
The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity
The Choice by Russell Roberts tells the story of a business owner who travels through time to see how his company and America change after government officials pass laws limiting trade. Most people think we as Americans are better off when we purchase products "Made in America". While the people who work for the companies producing those products definitely benefit, the rest of America may or may not. The book clearly explains this concept by exploring a series of questions asked by Ed Johnson, the owner of a television set company and David Ricardo, his time traveling tour guide.
The Price of Everything by Russell Roberts begins when a large store raises their prices following a natural disaster. Again, the general thought is the store is price gauging and hurting the public. This book pokes holes in that argument by explaining how high prices make people think twice about what they really need. In addition, it further explores concepts such as supply and demand, and specialization, all in story format.
These books make economics an exciting topic for discussion by putting the topic into context. I much prefer them to the dry textbooks I attempted to learn from in my younger days. :)
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