Skip to content

Alternative texts

‹ Back to Textbook Commentaries page

Here are some references which are designed either as alternative stand-alone textbooks or critical discussion of established economics texts. If you have suggestions for additions to this list, please email me, Stuart Birks, at kstuartbirks@gmail.com:

Argyrous G. and Stilwell F. (eds) (2011) Readings in Political Economy: Economics as a Social Science, Tilde University Press, Melbourne (details on Amazon) [See also Stilwell (2012) below.]

Birks S (2015) 40 Critical pointers for Students of Economics, WEA Press (details on publisher’s page)

Birks S (2015) Rethinking Economics: From analogies to the real world, Singapore: Springer (details on publisher’s page, on Amazon)

Bougrine, H., & Seccareccia, M. (Eds.). (2010). Introducing macroeconomic analysis : issues, questions, and competing views. Toronto: Emond Montgomery Publications. (details on publisher’s page)

Bougrine, H., Parker, I. C., & Seccareccia, M. (Eds.). (2010). Introducing microeconomic analysis : issues, questions, and competing views. Toronto: Emond Montgomery Publications. (details on publisher’s page)

Bowles, S., Edwards, R., & Roosevelt, F. (2005). Understanding capitalism : competition, command, and change (3rd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. (details and reviews on Amazon)

Chang, H.-J. (2014). Economics: the user’s guide. London: Pelican. (ebook details and reviews on Amazon, review in WEA Newsletter)

Cohn, S. M. 2007. Reintroducing macroeconomics: a critical approach, London, M E Sharp. (details and review on Amazon)

Dorman, P. (2014). Microeconomics : a fresh start. Heidelberg: Springer. (details on Amazon)

Earl, P. E. (1995). Microeconomics for business and marketing: lectures, cases, and worked essays. Aldershot, Hants, England: E. Elgar. (details on Amazon)

Earl, P. E., & Wakeley, T. (2005). Business economics: a contemporary approach. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill Education. (details on Amazon)

Elsner, W., Heinrich, T., & Schwardt, H. (2015). The microeconomics of complex economies : evolutionary, institutional, neoclassical, and complexity perspectives. Amsterdam ; Boston: Academic Press (details at Elsevier, details on Amazon)

Goodwin, N. R., Harris, J., Nelson, J. A., Roach, B., & Torras, M. (2014). Macroeconomics in context (2nd ed.). Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe. (details and review on Amazon)

Goodwin, N. R., Harris J. M., Nelson, J. A., Roach B., Torras M. (2013). Microeconomics in context (3rd ed.). Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe (details on Amazon)

Goodwin, N. R., Harris J. M., Nelson, J. A., Roach B., Torras M. (2014).Principles of Economics in Context, Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe (details on GDAE site)

Hare, P. (2012). Vodka and pickled cabbage: Eastern European travels of a professional economist [Kindle edition] (details on Amazon. Not a general text, but very readable with insights into institutions and adjustment to institutional change.)

Hill, R., & Myatt, T. (2010). The economics anti-textbook : a critical thinker’s guide to microeconomics. Black Point, N.S.: Fernwood Pub. (details and reviews on Amazon)

Keen, S. (2011) Debunking economics: the naked emperor dethroned? (Rev. and expanded ed.), London ; New York: Zed Books Ltd. (details and reviews on Amazon)

Komlos, J. (2014). What every economics student needs to know and doesn’t get in the usual principles text. Armonk, New York: M.E. Sharpe, Inc. (review in WEA Newsletter, details and reviews on Amazon)

Kurien, C. T. (1970). A theoretical approach to the Indian economy. London: Asia Publishing House. (details on Amazon)

Kurien, C. T. (1996). Rethinking economics: reflections based on a study of the Indian economy. New Delhi ; Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications. (details on Amazon)

Kurien, C. T. (2012). Wealth and illfare: An expedition into real life economics. Bangalore: Books for Change. (free pdf on WEA web site, discussed in WEA Newsletter, details on Amazon)

Linder, M. (1977a). The Anti-Samuelson Volume 1 Macroeconomics: Basic problems of the capitalist economy. New York: Urizen Books. (details on Amazon)

Linder, M. (1977b). The Anti-Samuelson Volume 2 Microeconomics: Basic problems of the capitalist economy. New York: Urizen Books. (details on Amazon)

McCloskey, D. N. (1998). The rhetoric of economics (2nd ed.). Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press. (details and reviews on Amazon)

McCloskey, D. N. (2006). The bourgeois virtues: ethics for an age of commerce. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. (details and reviews on Amazon)

McCloskey, D. N. (2010). Bourgeois dignity: why economics can’t explain the modern world. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. (details and reviews on Amazon)

Prasch, R. E. (2008). How markets work: supply, demand and the ‘real world’. Cheltenham, UK ; Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar. (details and review on Amazon)

Staveren, I. van (2015) Economics after the crisis : an introduction to economics from a pluralist and global perspective, Routledge (details at Routledge and on Amazon)

Stilwell, F. J. B. (2012). Political economy : the contest of economic ideas (3rd ed.). Australia: Oxford University Press. (details and reviews on Amazon) [See also Argyrous and Stilwell (2011) above.]

Stretton, H. (1999). Economics: a new introduction. Sydney, N.S.W.: UNSW Press. (2000 Pluto Press details and reviews on Amazon)

Swann, G. M. P. (2009). The economics of innovation : an introduction. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. (includes brief descriptions of alternative appraoches to consumer behaviour, etc., details and reviews on Amazon)

Tressell, R. (2012). The ragged trousered philanthropists. Ware: Wordsworth. (A novel from the early 1900s giving a working class perspective, details, reviews and free Kindle version on Amazon)

Varoufakis, Y. (1998). Foundations of economics : a beginner’s companion. London: Routledge. (primarily microeconomics, includes critical and historical perspectives, details on author’s web site, details and reviews on Amazon)

Wolff, R. D., & Resnick, S. A. (2012). Contending economic theories : neoclassical, Keynesian, and Marxian. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. (details, reviews and Kindle version on Amazon)