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Instructor Info:Omar Dahi
Office Extension x5392
TA Info:Solomon St. John
Term: 2012F
Meeting Info: Monday Wednesday
09:00 AM - 10:20 AM Franklin Patterson Hall (FPH) 105
09:00 AM - 10:20 AM Franklin Patterson Hall (FPH) 105
Description: The debates surrounding the Occupy movement of 2011 have highlighted both a crisis in the US and global economy as well as a crisis of economic thought. Many of the policies which have led to increased inequality, environmental destruction, and financial crisis have their roots in a free-market fundamentalism that pervades the teaching of undergraduate and postgraduate economics. In this course we ask the following questions: How does mainstream economic theory conceptualize key aspects of social reality, including human behavior, markets, and government? How would alternative economic theories explain those same aspects? What do assumptions of perfect competition, market efficiency, and rational expectations imply for economic policymaking, and how accurate are they in describing the actual functioning of the economy? In the first half of this course, the readings will introduce key micro-economic concepts from mainstream and non-mainstream approaches. In the second half, students will work on putting together a presentation dedicated to teaching one or more economic concepts to a general audience. This class is an inaugural course in a collaboration between Hampshire College and the Econ4 network.