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Louis UchitelleUntil now, behavioral economics has focused mainly on a variety of disparate traits that chip away at the assumption of rationality embedded in mainstream theory. A young person, for example, fails to join a 401(k) plan, even one subsidized by his employer, although if he were rational and fully informed, he would certainly sign up. What Akerlof and Shiller do is to highlight this sort of finding, packaging it with numerous other psychological insights into a half-dozen broad maxims that permanently alter the concept of rational behavior. And their book takes their case not just to economists, but also to the general reader. It is short (176 pages of text) and easy enough for laymen to understand (most of the time).
—The New York Times