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Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power,…
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Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty (urspr publ 2012; utgåvan 2013)

av Daron Acemoglu (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,683457,748 (3.78)20
Why are some nations rich and others poor? Is it culture, the weather, geography? Perhaps ignorance of the right policies? Simply, no. None of these factors is either definitive or destiny. Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson conclusively show that it is man-made political and economic institutions that underlie economic success (or lack of it). Based on fifteen years of original research, Acemoglu and Robinson marshall historical evidence from the Roman Empire to the Soviet Union, from Korea to Africa, to build a new theory of political economy with great relevance for the big questions of today, including: China has built an authoritarian growth machine. Will it continue to grow at such high speed and overwhelm the West? Is America moving from a virtuous circle, in which efforts by elites to aggrandize power are resisted, to a vicious one that enriches and empowers a small minority? What is the most effective way to help move billions of people from the rut of poverty to prosperity? This book will change the way you look at--and understand--the world.--From publisher description.… (mer)
Medlem:SpartacusB
Titel:Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty
Författare:Daron Acemoglu (Författare)
Info:Currency (2013), Edition: Illustrated, 544 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:*****
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty av Daron Acemoglu (2012)

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We tend to view historical lanscapes in linear mode and fail to realize that minor and sometimes chance occurrences progress to different outcomes. However Acemogol and Robinson provide us with a unique framework with which to view power, poverty and economical sucess over two thousand years resulting in a virtuous cycle of prosperity or vicious cycle of power and extraction. Empowerment and destruction of old agricultural, transportational and intensive labor methodologies through innovation. The power elite such as monarchs, presidents and dictators in the vicious cycle mode do not want and are threatened by change. Their discussion is replete with examples and should be read by all those with an interest in national policy and the vagaries of the historical process. I found the section on slavery particularly enlightening and did not realize how old the practice is. Their future prediction that China would “run out of steam”is based on their model of the viscious cycle. There is only so much you can extract. The book is well done, scholarly and readable. ( )
  mcdenis | Jul 30, 2021 |
Contains great ideas and really gives you a lens to view the world through. Downside is it drags out kinda long and starts using words from its theory to tell the stories at a certain point. They've already made their case by then, but it's a little annoying. ( )
  kevinwoneill | Jul 21, 2021 |
Maybe I'm weird, but to me it's a compliment to describe a book as reading like a well-written college textbook. Of course, this isn't a normal book - being yet another burden on the already-groaning shelves in the Why the First World Is Awesome sub-sub-genre of Big History, it's an attempt to deal with issues of development and democracy familiar to political science undergrads, and hence would fit in well on a syllabus - yet it is quite readable, if somewhat repetitious. The basic idea is straightforward: rich first world countries got that way through a process of centralization, political liberalization, and economic liberalization that allowed for ordinary people to participate in all aspects of society without the threat of either anarchy or tyranny; countries that aren't rich have typically gotten stuck on the first step (like Somalia), or more commonly the second step, with autocratic governments that treat their citizens and resources as their own private ATMs and actively resist modernization to the extent that it threatens their monopoly on power. Instead of being inclusive, they are exclusive, and while Acemoglu and Robinson deploy the two terms quite liberally, this idea is quite reasonable. There are of course a number of competing theories to explain international disparities in wealth; a brief list might include Jared Diamond's theories of geographical advantages, Francis Fukuyama's thymos, Max Weber's Protestant work ethic, the Mandate of Heaven, Aristotle's constitutions of the polis, assorted other religious and cultural hypotheses, and of course good old-fashioned racial cheerleading, examples of which you can procure at your leisure from your local White Nationalist Reading Circle. I think Acemoglu and Robinson are on to something important, but I have issues with the way that the book is written, namely that certain examples, such as poor African countries, appear over and over, while some examples that would theoretically be quite illuminating, such as Canada vs the US or China vs India, do not get raised at all. Anyone trying to Explain It All with their own home-grown version of Isaac Asimov's psychohistory eventually gets confronted with the maddening amount of contingency and chance (the outcome of a battle, the sudden death of a king, an unfortunate storm) that overturns any number of "shoulds" in a theory, yet I think that on the whole the idea of inclusion vs exclusion is quite powerful and seems to get us "most of the way there", in that while it would be tough to argue that the US is richer than Australia because its political or economic institutions are more inclusive (a laughable notion), it would certainly seem to explain quite a bit about the US compared to, say, Mexico. Certainly it seems to cover comparisons such as the prosperity of North Korea and South Korea, Nogales in Mexico and the Nogales in the US, and the US South and the US Northeast. However, in addition to the authors and theories listed previously, I wished that Acemoglu and Robinson had engaged with four more. Firstly, Mancur Olson's The Rise and Decline of Nations has quite a bit to say about interest group politics and the logic behind how various groups can treat a society as more desirable to steal from than to contribute to; Acemoglu and Robinson sort of deal with the complexities of faction in a scattered fashion, but seem to define their axis of inclusivity-exclusivity primarily in terms of a central authority only. Secondly, Alexis de Tocqueville's The Old Regime and the French Revolution has quite a bit to say about why the French Revolution took the path that it did, and given its importance, any attempt to use it as a prototype for other countries trying to deal with extractive institutions or the iron rule of oligarchy should ponder its lessons about how it is and is not unique in the history of revolution. Thirdly, Paul Krugman's The Conscience of a Liberal has an extensive section showing how economic inequality can be driven by political inequality - more specifically, the Republican Party's capture by plutocrats has been a major contributor to not only a return to pre-New Deal ideas about the role of labor but also about citizen participation in government - this two-way interaction of political and economic forces in societies could have used more exploration. Fourthly, Joseph Tainter's The Collapse of Complex Societies makes a powerful case that societies' political and economic institutions are determined primarily by the energy available to them, and that the form of government a particular country has is more an effect than a cause of any particular level of wealth inequality; this is similar to the weak environmental determinism of Jared Diamond but more broad in that it predicts certain dynamics in the shift from long-term to short-term thinking that would seem to have been a natural fit for this book. I guess I'm being tough on this already well-researched book for not being even more well-researched precisely because I agreed so much with its thesis and was looking forward to what could have been the "one book to rule them all" in terms of theories of development. It's a compliment to the authors that so much of it seems obvious, because societies are willing to put up with what seems to us "modern enlightened folk" like astonishingly dumb institutions for a shockingly long time, and at bottom I don't think that most Americans are too much smarter or more virtuous than the unlucky denizens of the many poor countries chronicled herein. Furthermore, I think that the framing of inclusivity versus exclusivity hits precisely on a major political idea that divides liberals from conservatives in many contexts and in many different time periods - certainly the modern liberal project has embraced inclusion as gospel. The book is definitely worth a read for the mini-histories of countries like Botswana that are unlikely to be familiar to many readers, and it deserves to be taken seriously by anyone interested in comparative political economy or, to borrow a phrase, "the wealth of nations". ( )
  aaronarnold | May 11, 2021 |
Livro muito interessante que desenvolve uma teoria que se não estiver correcta, está pelo menos muito bem justificada. Ao descartar as teorias que explicam o sucesso ou o fracasso da Nações através da geografia, da cultura ou da ignorância das elites, propõe uma teoria alternativa muito bem fundamentada.
De facto, recorrendo às teorias simplificadoras como se pode explicar que o Egipto tenha sido uma nação rica e poderosa durante dois milénios, seja hoje um país pobre?
Concordo com a ideia que a riqueza de um país dependa da natureza das suas instituições políticas e económicas e que, a natureza destas dependa do empenho e participação política das suas populações.
Os autores defendem que as instituições extractivas podem permitir algum crescimento, desde que não provoque “destruição criativa” nem pressuponha inovação. Esse crescimento será limitado no tempo e a longo prazo levará a depauperação da nação. Só as instituições inclusivas levam à riqueza e ao sucesso. Ambos os tipos de instituições são analisadas quer através de casos históricos, quer através de exemplos actuais, o que permite a elaboração de um novo índice:
Nogales (actual) 17
Colonização espanhola (século XVI) 20
Colonização inglesa (século XVII) 30
México (século XIX) 41
México (actual) 53
Coreias (actual) 90
Congo (século XVI) 117
Europa (século XIV) 121
URSS 153
Revolução Neolítica 167
Maias 175
Veneza (séculos XII a XV) 185
Roma imperial 193
Inglaterra romana 209
Revolução Gloriosa 230
Revolução Industrial 238
Impérios russo, austríaco e turco 256
China (século XV) 277
Etiópia 281
Somália 285
Indochina Holandesa 294
Os produtores de escravos 300
África do Sul (século XIX) 310
Austrália (século XIX) 328
Revolução francesa 338
Restauração Meiji 352
Inglaterra (século XVIII) 361
EUA (século XIX e XX) 381
Serra Leoa 400
Guatemala 412
Esclavagismo no sul dos EUA 419
Etiópia (século XX) 427
Zimbabwe 438
Serra Leoa 444
Argentina (século XV) 457
Coreia do norte 462
Uzbequistão 465
Egipto (século XX) 471
Botswana 481
Estado do sul dos EUA (século XX) 493
Republica Popular da China 501
Afeganistão 538
Brasil (século XX) 543 ( )
  CMBras | Jan 23, 2021 |
Should have been a longish article on the Atlantic,and even then it might have been worthy of a tl;dr. ( )
  agtgibson | Jan 5, 2021 |
Visa 1-5 av 45 (nästa | visa alla)
It should be no surprise that countries with those advantages ended up rich and with good institutions, while countries with those disadvantages didn’t. ... The ... weakness is the authors’ resort to assertion unsupported or contradicted by facts. ... The authors’ discussions of what can and can’t be done today to improve conditions in poor countries are thought-provoking and will stimulate debate.
 

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Daron Acemogluprimär författarealla utgåvorberäknat
Robinson, James A.huvudförfattarealla utgåvorbekräftat

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Preface

This book is about the huge differences in incomes and standards of living that separate the rich countries of the world, such as the United States, Great Britain, and Germany, from the poor, such as those in sub-Saharan Africa, Central America, and South Asia.
1.
So Close and Yet So Different

The Economics of the Rio Grande

The city of Nogales is cut in half by a fence.
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Countries such as Great Britain and the United States became rich because their citizens overthrew the elites who controlled power and created a society where political rights ere much more broadly distributed, where the government was accountable and responsive to citizens, and where the great mass of people could take advantage of economic opportunities.
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Why are some nations rich and others poor? Is it culture, the weather, geography? Perhaps ignorance of the right policies? Simply, no. None of these factors is either definitive or destiny. Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson conclusively show that it is man-made political and economic institutions that underlie economic success (or lack of it). Based on fifteen years of original research, Acemoglu and Robinson marshall historical evidence from the Roman Empire to the Soviet Union, from Korea to Africa, to build a new theory of political economy with great relevance for the big questions of today, including: China has built an authoritarian growth machine. Will it continue to grow at such high speed and overwhelm the West? Is America moving from a virtuous circle, in which efforts by elites to aggrandize power are resisted, to a vicious one that enriches and empowers a small minority? What is the most effective way to help move billions of people from the rut of poverty to prosperity? This book will change the way you look at--and understand--the world.--From publisher description.

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