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Who Cooked Adam Smith's Dinner?: A Story of Women and Economics

Who Cooked Adam Smith s Dinner A Story of Women and Economics How do you get your dinner That is the basic question of economics When economist and philosopher Adam Smith proclaimed that all our actions were motivated by self interest he used the example of the

  • Title: Who Cooked Adam Smith's Dinner?: A Story of Women and Economics
  • Author: Katrine Kielos Katrine Marçal
  • ISBN: 9781681771427
  • Page: 442
  • Format: Hardcover
  • How do you get your dinner That is the basic question of economics When economist and philosopher Adam Smith proclaimed that all our actions were motivated by self interest, he used the example of the baker and the butcher as he laid the foundations for economic man He argued that the baker and butcher didn t give bread and meat out of the goodness of their hearts ItHow do you get your dinner That is the basic question of economics When economist and philosopher Adam Smith proclaimed that all our actions were motivated by self interest, he used the example of the baker and the butcher as he laid the foundations for economic man He argued that the baker and butcher didn t give bread and meat out of the goodness of their hearts It s an ironic point of view coming from a bachelor who lived with his mother for most of his life a woman who cooked his dinner every night.Nevertheless, the economic man has dominated our understanding of modern day capitalism, with a focus on self interest and the exclusion of all other motivations Such a view point disregards the unpaid work of mothering, caring, cleaning and cooking It insists that if women are paid less, then that s because their labor is worth less Economics has told us a story about how the world works and we have swallowed it, hook, line and sinker This story has not served women well Now it s time to change it.A kind of femininst Freakonomics, Who Cooked Adam Smith s Dinner charts the myth of economic man from its origins at Adam Smith s dinner table, its adaptation by the Chicago School, and its disastrous role in the 2008 Global Financial Crisis in a witty and courageous dismantling of one of the biggest myths of our time.

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      Posted by:Katrine Kielos Katrine Marçal
      Published :2019-01-15T10:12:49+00:00

    1 thought on “Who Cooked Adam Smith's Dinner?: A Story of Women and Economics

    1. I REALLY wanted to like this book. I ordered it immediately after reading a review of it because I was so intrigued and excited by its premise. But I ended up disappointed in it and had to force myself to finish it. The central thesis of the book is interesting and crucially important, in my opinion (which is the reason it gets two stars and not one). But the author's clipped writing style would have lent itself better to a manifesto-style book that was half this book's length; that, or the book [...]

    2. I enjoyed this book because the author took familiar economic ideas and turned them on their heads. Her point seems to be that economists have primarily been men and have developed an idea of rational "economic man" for how the world should work, leaving out the real "invisible hand", that is, the hand of a (usually unpaid) woman who is taking care of all the nurturing sorts of roles in society so that economic man can go out and manage the "real" economy. She said Adam Smith only mentioned the [...]

    3. What an interesting and subversive book this was. The "women and economics" story is sort of the background and Marçal spends more time focusing on the myth of the individualistic, rational, "economic man." It's an overview of the history of economics that begins with Smith and the invisible hand, and discusses the legacies of classical and neoliberal economics in short incisive chapters. This was a translation from the Swedish, and after finding myself alarmed at the typos in the 3-page prefac [...]

    4. It seemed to me the book was actually a collection of newspaper columns. It is frustrating enough that an author posits a question as the purpose of a book and fail to answer it or deliver a coherent theory or argument on the question. But positing a question and leading the reader to expect an answer only to write at the last pages that the purpose of the book is not to answer the question is deceiving.Actually there is no question to be answered, as the author concedes in the book that her mai [...]

    5. As an economist and a feminist, I really loved this novel. But, after the first couple of chapters where the significance of women's labor in the household is really underlined, the theoretical jargon concerning economic man simply bored me. I understood it, mostly because I'm studying economics, but the anecdotes and fast-paced chapters failed to really hit home any concrete ideas for me. I also took a few issues with the ending chapters where the author discusses how there's really only one se [...]

    6. This is an entertaining and thoroughly readable feminist take-down of economic theory, in particular the idea of "economic man". Marcal's writing is occasionally angry, often very funny and always accessible. On the cover of my edition, there is a quote by Caroline Criado-Perez: "I genuinely believe that if everyone read Katrine Marcal's new book, patriarchy would crumble" I concur!By the way, the answer to the question "who cooked Adam Smith's dinner?" is, you guessed it, his mother!

    7. Adam Smith said 'It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.' This book is based on an interesting and thought-provoking observation: Adam Smith lived with his mother for all of her life, and she cooked his dinner every day. The butcher, baker and brewer may all demand payment for their work, but the work done by Mrs Smith was done out of love, and she was never paid for it. The book explores the [...]

    8. Katrine Marçal realiza un recuento histórico desde el ya conocido "hombre económico" de Adam Smith hasta las diversas teorías económicas actuales que lo sustentan y que buscan que el hombre económico sea quien nos relacione como individuos. Todo esto mientras le brinda una mirada feminista, dándole voz al trabajo que durante miles de años ha realizado la mujer y que se le ha invizibilizado, de tal manera que hasta el día de hoy no se ha incluido en la economía actual. Con una mirada cr [...]

    9. I'm giving this 5 stars, not in the sense of "best book ever" but rather "everyone should read." I've never studied economics, but I'm familiar with the pretty much ubiquitous idea (in America et al) of the invisible hand of the market--if everyone acts in their own self-interest, it benefits the economy. But this idea doesn't take into account the vast amount of unpaid labour, usually done by women, that actually makes everything run. (E.g. The famous economist Adam Smith's mother cooked his di [...]

    10. A readable, witty look at the intersection of economics and feminism. I loved this and breezed through it -- a lot to chew on relating to women's work, economic mobility, and human psychology. Also a reminder than white dudes who did a lot of the groundwork for "thinking" and "philosophy" in the past and became legends were only allowed to do so because mom/wife did all of the other work. In Smith's case, he lived with mom, she fed him, she did the chores, and he only had to work. (Thoreau, if y [...]

    11. An interesting, well reasoned take on economic theory that provides a useful primer on the basics (which I forgot a very long time ago), and then cleverly dissects them to reveal the significant gaps. The central message being that economic theory ignores the value of work done by women and that this (possibly deliberate) oversight means that the theory the world spins on is dangerously flawed. It’s engagingly written throughout and never gets to heavy even if, like me, you’re not used to re [...]

    12. Un libro interesante pero creo que en algunos puntos la autora deduce mal las cosas o quizás le falte mayor análisis

    13. The subtitle of this is A Story About Women and Economics, so it was bound to grab my attention.It is, in short, a summary of economics and how it doesn't calculate the worth of unpaid work, which is largely but not exclusively, done by women. An example is in the title: undoubtedly Adam Smith had a phenomenal mind and is pretty much the father of modern economics. But he barely mentioned the contribution women made - and many economists fall into the same trap.Only the support of his mother, an [...]

    14. Marcal's thesis - that the economic model on which most of the world operates assumes an "economic man" that acts rationally and in self-interest but depends on assistance to feed him, clothe him, have his children, etc and undervalues all of that effort - makes sense and is a call to action. The problem is that she writes in a staccato style that is all but unreadable. And her passion for the subject is overwhelmed by sarcasm. Too bad because she's on to something. But this is one of the worst [...]

    15. Brilliant book, I learned a lot about economics (but I was starting from a pretty low base). This is a polemic not a textbook and I was aware it was a particular point of view, I am sure there will be critiques of her economic views but I found it compelling and it is very easy to read. If you wonder why no-one saw the 2008 financial crash coming, and why the big banks are still there, doing what they did before while the average person is much worse off, this is the book for you.

    16. Katrine Marcal writes about a part of economics that has never made sense to me. I'm glad someone is making this problem more known about. What we need next is a different way of seeing how the world works.

    17. A very cogent and reasoned critique of the shortcomings of modern economic thought - and reging but restrained anger at where it has led us

    18. Not feeling it. Great idea but terrible execution. No single thread through the book, disjointed, too much that's vague at times and overly specific at others. Meh.

    19. I've been trying to get my hands on this book for awhile now, because I was really interested in learning more about women's place in the economy. While Marçal does touch on these practical details, the majority of the book is spent discussing economic theory. She purports that our modern theory revolves completely around "economic man" who embodies the qualities of competitiveness, rationality, strength, objectivity, universality, basically masculine traits. By leaving his desire for all the " [...]

    20. Well this is straight up awesome. She totally tears economists a new one. And leaves you thinking I can't believe people have bought into this BS for so long. I mean the garbage that economists spew. Plus she has a go at Freud, which I always appreciate. I didn't think it was quite 5 stars though. Sometimes the compelling factor slipped a little, and I think, as you would expect, it loses a little in translation (from Swedish).One of my favourite stories was how some male economist is explaining [...]

    21. Почему рождение детей и приготовление ужина не считаются продуктивной работой и не учитываются в ВВП? Кто воспитывает детей няни и убирает дома у уборщицы? Почему большинство живущих за чертой бедности — женщины? Эта книга поднимает важные вопросы и помогает переосмысли [...]

    22. This was a clever book on how women and the work we do have been excluded from economic theory and economic systems. The book itself was littered with quotable lines and images that capture the imagination and will be much utilised. the book also attacks the patriarchal premises of current economic theory and the manifestation termed 'neoliberalism'. However, does not posit in concrete terms what a feminist economics response to neoliberalism will look like, beyond the broad principles.

    23. Several reasons I can think of to criticize this. It suffers from thematic incoherence, the translation is a little sloppy, and it probably should have been published as more of a manifesto. But that criticism is largely ignorable, it's god damn fascinating throughout. No doubt the patriarchy would stay firmly in place if everybody read it, but it's a fantastic perspective to have when introducing yourself to some of the more popular economic theories in the western world.

    24. I'd give this 5 stars for the importance of the ideas it discusses. I just found it a bit repetitive in the writing, and at times it seems quite basic, but the insights build up and the combined weight of them is quite surprising.

    25. I literally kept falling asleep while trying to read this book. I loved the premise of it, but unfortunately it was much too technical for my level of economic understanding. I made myself read to page 50 and just couldn't go any further.

    26. I confess I gave up on the last two chapters and in the end just skimmed them, but that's not a fair reflection on the book, which was excellent. It was well written with a compelling message and at times very entertaining. I just ran out of steam with it at the end.

    27. A bit repetitive at times. Also, there were times where I felt like I couldn't follow her conclusions. I felt like there more explanations about economic theories than feminist economic theories. But other than that, pretty interesting.

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