How to study economics in your spare time

Our apologies a Typepad error has swallowed this post; might any of you have a copy of it to send me and/or put in the comments?  In any case the comments are excellent…in the post I recommended Mankiw’s text, the reading list on his blog, Freakonomics, Tim Harford, my own In Praise of Commercial Culture, and texts by Hal Varian and Eric Rasmusen, among other sources.  Most of all just let loose and break from your reading program to follow your inclinations and passions…

Addendum: Simon Taylor comes to the rescue, here was the original post:

I am a chemistry major interested in learning economics in my spare time.  With summer fast approaching, I’ll have more spare time to pursue the subject than I currently do.  I would like to start with the basics and pursue micro and macro up to an advanced level.  (I realize, of course, this cannot be done over the summer alone.)  I’ve never taken an economics course before, but being a science student, I can handle a mathematically intensive approach.

I am wondering if you could recommend some textbooks, journal articles, and any influential books by economists that you would encourage others to read, as well as provide some recommendations as to the order in which these things should be studied.

The best start is our blogroll and then try Mankiw’s Principles book if you need the background and don’t mind the length.  More generally, here is Greg’s recommended reading list, though I don’t like Heilbroner’s book.  I also recommend Arnold Kling’s on-line text, my own In Praise of Commercial Culture, but best of all is having an office next door to Alex, Bryan, and Robin.  For mathematical approaches, see the Ph.d. textbook by Hal Varian, Eric Rasmusen’s Games and Signalling, Milton Friedman’s old Price Theory book, and quiz yourself with micro puzzles until you drop dead.

Most of all, I don’t think people much stick to reading programmes, nor should they.  It is best is to jump off track and pursue the diversions which fascinate you.

Readers, what else do you recommend?


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