EconTalk
Russ Roberts

The Closed Hand of Exclusion

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

closed fist.jpg In this week's episode, EconTalk host Russ Roberts welcomed Princeton University's Thomas Leonard to talk about his book, Illiberal Reformers: Race, Eugenics, and American Economics in the Progressive Era. Its a tough conversation, exploring as it does the very unsavory roots of the progressive movement--and the discipline of economics--in the United States.

Now we'd like to hear from you. What struck you in this week's episode? Share your thoughts with us, and let's continue the conversation.

1. How did the progressive era change the nature and scope of the state, according to Leonard? What vestiges of this change persist today, and what makes them so persistent?

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Podcast episode Thomas Leonard on Race, Eugenics, and Illiberal Reformers

EconTalk Episode with Thomas Leonard
Hosted by Russ Roberts

illiberal%20reformers.jpg Were the first professional economists racists? Thomas Leonard of Princeton University and author of Illiberal Reformers talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about his book--a portrait of the progressive movement and its early advocates at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. The economists of that time were eager to champion the power of the state and its ability to regulate capitalism successfully. Leonard exposes the racist origins of these ideas and the role eugenics played in the early days of professional economics. Woodrow Wilson takes a beating as well.

Size:31.3 MB
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Rhapsody in Reading

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

read aloud.jpg EconTalk host Russ Roberts welcomed back Doug Lemov, of Uncommon Schools, this week, for a very interesting conversation about reading, and especially, reading rigorously. In his new book, Reading Reconsidered, Lemov's primary audience is educators, but as Russ notes, and as should be evident from their conversation, it has relevance far beyond the classroom.

How much do you read today, and do you prefer electronic reading to "real" books? How has the digital age- and your cellphone, in particular- changed your reading habits? Those of your children and/or students? Do you ever read aloud anymore? Share your thoughts on this week's episode with us; we love to hear from you.

1. What does Lemov mean when he says that reading is "first among equals," and to what extent do you agree?

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Podcast episode Doug Lemov on Reading

EconTalk Episode with Doug Lemov
Hosted by Russ Roberts

Reading%20Reconsidered.jpg Doug Lemov of Uncommon School and co-author of Reading Reconsidered talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about reading. Lemov makes the case for the educational importance of critical reading of challenging books and texts. Along the way, he gives listeners some ideas of how to read themselves and gives parents some ideas for how to educate their children.

Size:28.8 MB
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Podcast episode Erik Hurst on Work, Play, and the Dynamics of U.S. Labor Markets

EconTalk Episode with Erik Hurst
Hosted by Russ Roberts

video%20games.jpg Erik Hurst of the University of Chicago talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the state of the labor market in the United States. Hurst notes dramatic changes in employment rates for men and speculates about the causes. Two factors discussed in detail are declines in the manufacturing sector and the rise of high-end video games as a form of leisure.

Size:32.6 MB
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We Dare You.

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

disorder.jpg How messy is your desk? Do you shy away from face-to-face conversations in favor of text messages? What sort of strategy do you use to allocate your retirement savings? These situations and more were on the table in this week's delightfully "messy" EconTalk episode, as host Russ Roberts welcomed author Tim Harford (aka the Undercover Economist) back to the program.

Harford, with his affinity for (most) things messy, is a man after my own heart. (I posted a photo of my own messy desk on twitter earlier this week, and got some great pics in response. Please add yours to the collection!) Of course now we're wondering about more than what your desk looks like...So have a go at some of our prompts, and share your thoughts with us. As always, we love to hear from you.

1. How does Harford's notion of a "more metaphorical mess" spark creativity? To what extent have you experienced such a phenomenon in your own life? (And have you listened to the Keith Jarrett recording yet??? You won't be disappointed. We'd love to hear your reaction to that, too!)

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Podcast episode Tim Harford on the Virtues of Disorder and Messy

EconTalk Episode with Tim Harford
Hosted by Russ Roberts

messy-hb-us-206x300.png Tim Harford, journalist and author, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about his latest book, Messy. Harford argues that we have a weakness for order and neat solutions causing us to miss opportunities to find happiness or success with messier, more disorderly processes and solutions. Hartford looks at a wide range of examples from business and personal life making the case that tidiness is overrated and that messy should get more love.

Size:33.3 MB
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Where Are You on the Spectrum?

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

consciousness.jpg Why do we tend to think of the mind as static--whether throughout our lives or even throughout the day? What do our brains have in common with computers? David Gelernter, Yale professor of computer science and author of The Tides of Mind, joined EconTalk host Russ Roberts this week to explore the nature of consciousness.

So brush the dust off your Up spectrum (or is it your Down spectrum?) and share your thoughts with us. Or share your vacuum cleaner's thoughts.* As always, we love to hear from you.

1. How does Gelernter describe the journey our mind makes between its Up and Down spectrums over the course of the day? Does this affect your experience? If yes, and how do these changes affect the way you think and the actions you take at different points throughout the day?

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Podcast episode David Gelernter on Consciousness, Computers, and the Tides of Mind

EconTalk Episode with David Gelernter
Hosted by Russ Roberts

Tides%20of%20Mind.jpg David Gelernter, professor of computer science at Yale University and author of The Tides of Mind, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about consciousness and how our minds evolve through the course of the day and as we grow up. Other topics discussed include creativity, artificial intelligence, and the singularity.

Size:31.4 MB
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Strangers on the Web

EconTalk Extra
by Amy Willis

down online.jpg What do you tell others about yourself- purposefully or not- via your online persona? How can we ensure that our communication remains "honest enough to function?" How will what we protect about our identities online and how we do it change over the decades to come? In this week's conversation, EconTalk host Russ Roberts welcomed Judith Donath to talk about how technology affects the social world, along with her new book, The Social Machine.

As always, we'd like to know what thoughts and questions this week's episode prompted for you. So let's hear it; we love to hear from you.

1. Share a question (or more!) that arose in your mind sparked by Roberts's and Donath's conversation.

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