Knowledge and Decisions
- Narrated by: Robertson Dean
- Length: 20 hrs and 56 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 10-15-12
- Language: English
- Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Regular price: $31.47
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Knowledge and Decisions, a winner of the 1980 Law and Economics Center Prize, was heralded as a landmark work and selected for this prize “because of its cogent contribution to our understanding of the differences between the market process and the process of government.” In announcing the award, the center acclaimed that the “contribution to our understanding of the process of regulation alone would make the book important, but in reemphasizing the diversity and efficiency that the market makes possible, [this] work goes deeper and becomes even more significant.”
Thomas Sowell is currently a scholar in residence at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He has been published in both academic journals and such popular media as the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and Fortune and writes a syndicated column for newspapers across the country.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Doug on 12-08-12
Thomas Sowell's Greatest Work
IMO, among Thomas Sowell's small library of outstanding contributions, Knowledge and Decisions easily ranks as the finest. This is the 1996 edition, which simply adds a substantial preface to the original 1980 edition as far as I can tell.
The first half of the book is a brilliant, seminal, and timeless treatment of the nature of knowledge, how it is obtained, validated, transmitted, coordinated and acted upon. Sowell analyzes social, economic, and political structures and institutions in terms of their decision making processes and incentives as opposed to their intentions and hoped for results, and explains in a truly fundamental way how complex societies work.
The second half of the book examines specific trends and issues in the social, political, economic, and legal arenas. At the time of its publication, this was the current events section. Of course, the world has changed in many profound (and superficial) ways since 1980, so this section today is more historical in nature.
But since one of the great strengths of Sowell's work is its basis in and exposition of global and world historical experiences and perspectives, section two retains its interest and force, and is an effective reminder of the failures of centralized decision making structures that were viscerally evident a generation ago (especially via communism), but whose implications are largely forgotten today. As the saying goes, those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
All in all, this is a great book that stands the test of time quite easily.
17 of 17 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Lambro Johnson on 02-20-18
Thomas Sowell should be far more widely read and recognized as one of the best commentators on the economics and politics of our times.
By Anonymous User on 07-28-17
an incredible work. demands repeat listens/reads. Robertson Dean is the perfect person to read sowell's work, couldn't imagine it being read by anybody else.