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The Real Wealth of Nations: Creating a Caring Economics Hardcover – March 28, 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
Her bedrock critique is that economics is harmfully selective in what it chooses to measure and consider. That's like stopping mathematics with the numbers 1 though 5 and ignoring the other numbers.
Macro economics does this by paying scant, if any, attention to production and services that don't generate an exchange of money (such as raising your own children) but have an economic impact (by producing a more or less productive member of society who generates fewer or more benefits for others) or aren't in the legal economy (drug dealing) which certainly affect the "legal" economy.
Micro economics does this by encouraging decision makers to look too narrowly at close-in effects (such as company near-term profits) rather than the ripple and secondary effects (such as the benefit or harm that customers, partners, employees, the environment, and society experience which also have measurable costs and benefits). Most of those who apply micro economics would have no clue for how to consider those other dimensions.
What you don't measure will be treated like it doesn't matter. That's the rub. We are all bound up in a tradition stall that says that much of what creates a good society doesn't require such focus. But if we did focus, we would do better. I agree.
So how do we get past this? Reading The Real Wealth of Nations is a good start. You can't see all of your social conditioning until someone shows you what's missing from the paradigm. Ms. Eisler cites a lot of studies by others to get you thinking. That's good.Read more ›
The other reviewers have done a great job at highlighting many of the positive aspects of this book. I wanted to offer a slightly dissenting opinion, based on three issues that bothered me. One is that I believe the book is about twice as long as it needs to be. There is considerable redundancy, and by the last few chapters, I found myself growing increasingly annoyed as she repeatedly repeated ideas and themes covered [well] in other chapters. As with some other books I've read, it strikes me as a potentially fabulous journal-length article that was stretched too far. A brief perusal of her paper on "Work, Values, Caring" available on her PartnershipWay web site suggests that this paper may cover much of the content in the book, in a much shorter space.
A second shortcoming I see in the book is a lack of reference to either Milton Mayeroff's classic work ON CARING or to Yochai Benkler's more recent paradigm-shifting book, THE WEALTH OF NETWORKS: HOW SOCIAL PRODUCTION TRANSFORMS MARKETS AND FREEDOM.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Brilliant. This would make an interesting conversation partner with Laura Brown's feminist therapy for a therapeutic economy and a cooperative economic sociotherapy. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Gerald Dillenbeck
This is a life changing book --- I hope. Riane proposes nothing less than a way to save ourselves and the planet. Please read this!Published 14 months ago by CLS
This book should be encouraged as a "must read" for everyone. The ideas are relevant and necessary to changing human consciousness on a large scale in short time frame. Read morePublished 20 months ago by KtinaE
From the perspective of someone who's read many books on the nature of our economic system in the USA (and global capitalism), I must say that this author does a marvelous job of... Read morePublished 23 months ago by R. Riley
The author has a great purpose in this book. Her purpose is to help ourselves, our friends, our societies, even the Earth itself, to live a longer, healthier life through an... Read morePublished on May 13, 2014 by Gaggleframpf
This is a personal copy after I read it through my local public library. Am using this for an online course with Riane Eisler's cohorts for creating a "caring economy. Read morePublished on October 28, 2013 by William Carl See
The premise of the book is that the activities of caring for others - and particularly for children - are not economically rewarded to an extent that is commensurate with the... Read morePublished on October 27, 2013 by J. Resnick
I did not expect new but I did not expect pages covered in underlines and highlights. I was very disappointed.Published on August 1, 2013 by L. MacDonald
The "caring economy" confuses economics with social issues. This is an amateur approach to social value in economics in support of ever larger government as an instrument of wealth... Read morePublished on May 15, 2013 by Gderf