The Haves and the Have-Nots: A Brief and Idiosyncratic History of Global Inequality

The Haves and the Have-Nots: A Brief and Idiosyncratic History of Global Inequality

by Branko Milanovic

Paperback(First Trade Paper Edition)

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Who is the richest person in the world, ever? Does where you were born affect how much money you’ll earn over a lifetime? How would we know? Why—beyond the idle curiosity—do these questions even matter? In The Haves and the Have-Nots, Branko Milanovic, one of the world’s leading experts on wealth, poverty, and the gap that separates them, explains these and other mysteries of how wealth is unevenly spread throughout our world, now and through time.
Milanovic uses history, literature and stories straight out of today’s newspapers, to discuss one of the major divisions in our social lives: between the haves and the have-nots. He reveals just how rich Elizabeth Bennet’s suitor Mr. Darcy really was; how much Anna Karenina gained by falling in love; how wealthy ancient Romans compare to today’s super-rich; where in Kenyan income distribution was Obama’s grandfather; how we should think about Marxism in a modern world; and how location where one is born determines his wealth. He goes beyond mere entertainment to explain why inequality matters, how it damages our economics prospects, and how it can threaten the foundations of the social order that we take for granted.
  Bold, engaging, and illuminating, The Haves and the Have-Nots teaches us not only how to think about inequality, but why we should.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780465031412
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 08/07/2012
Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
Pages: 280
Sales rank: 757,509
Product dimensions: 5.64(w) x 8.06(h) x 0.74(d)
Age Range: 13 - 18 Years

About the Author

Branko Milanovic, lead economist at the World Bank's research division in Washington, DC, and professor at University of Maryland, is author of Worlds Apart.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Chapter 1 Essay I: Unequal People: Inequality Among Individuals Within a Nation 3

Vignette 1.1 Romance and Riches 33

Vignette 1.2 Anna Vronskaya? 37

Vignette 1.3 Who Was the Richest Person Ever? 41

Vignette 1.4 How Unequal Was the Roman Empire? 46

Vignette 1.5 Was Socialism Egalitarian? 53

Vignette 1.6 In What Parisian Arrondissement Should You Live in the Thirteenth Century and Today? 61

Vignette 1.7 Who Gains from Fiscal Redistribution? 68

Vignette 1.8 Can Several Countries Exist in One? 74

Vignette 1.9 Will China Survive in 2048? 78

Vignette 1.10 Two Students of Inequality: Vilfredo Pareto and Simon Kuznets 83

Chapter 2 Essay II: Unequal Nations: Inequality Among Countries in the World 95

Vignette 2.1 Why Was Marx Led Astray? 109

Vignette 2.2 How Unequal Is Today's World? 115

Vignette 2.3 How Much of Your Income is Determined at Birth? 120

Vignette 2.4 Should the Whole World Be Composed of Gated Communities? 124

Vignette 2.5 Who Are the Harrage? 130

Vignette 2.6 The Three Generations of Obamas 135

Vignette 2.7 Did the World Become More Unequal During Deglobalization? 141

Chapter 3 Essays III: Unequal World Inequality Among Citizens in the World 149

Vignette 3.1 Where in the Global Income Distribution Are You? 165

Vignette 3.2 Does the World Have a Middle Class? 171

Vignette 3.3 How Different Are the United States and the European Union? 176

Vignette 3.4 Why Are Asia and Latin America Mirror Images of Each Other? 182

Vignette 3.5 Do You Want to Know the Winner Before the Game Begins? 187

Vignette 3.6 Income Inequality and the Global Financial Crisis 193

Vignette 3.7 Did Colonizers Exploit as Much as They Could? 198

Vignette 3.8 Why Was Rawls Indifferent to Global Inequality? 203

Vignette 3.9 Geopolitics in Light of (or Enlightened by) Economics 208

Notes 217

Further Readings 235

Index 247

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