Advertisement

Peter T. Leeson, WTF?!: An economic tour of the weird

Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2017. xiv + 264 pages. $27.95 (paperback)
  • Mark Koyama
Article

Pete Leeson is not your everyday economist. And WTF?! is not an ordinary economics book. Leeson describes WTF?! as an economic tour of the weird. The book is structured as an eccentric tour hosted by the garrulous host (whose tongue is held firmly in cheek throughout). Accompanying the reader on this tour is the charming Ania (the author’s wife), a grumbling economist perennially disappointed at the lack of rigor and equations in the book, an angry priest, and a host of other characters who have minor walk-on parts.

The tour encompasses many instances of unusual and seemingly bizarre institutions taken from history or anthropology. As each chapter or tour stop is based on one or more peer-reviewed article written by the author, there is intellectual substance to the entertainment. And it should be stressed from the outset that the book isentertaining. Leeson has set out to write a compulsively readable and accessible book. Many authors claim that their work could be enjoyably read by...

References

  1. Gershman, B. (2015). The economic origins of the evil eye belief. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 110, 119–144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Koyama, M. (2010). Evading the ‘taint of usury’: The usury prohibition as a barrier to entry. Explorations in Economic History, 47(4), 420–442.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Leeson, P. T. (2012). An Austrian approach to law and economics, with special reference to superstition. The Review of Austrian Economics, 25(3), 185–198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Rubin, J. (2009). Social insurance, commitment, and the origin of law: Interest bans in early Christianity. The Journal of Law and Economics, 52(4), 761–786.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hoover InstitutionStanford UniversityStanfordUSA
  2. 2.Center for Study of Public ChoiceGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA

Personalised recommendations