Happiness Economics

Happiness Economics

Book - 2011
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Shortlisted for the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour

Will Thorne is a stalled poet, married to Judy, a wildly successful celebrity economist. Pressured by a starving fellow poet, Will establishes The Poets' Preservation Society, a genteel organization to help poets in need. But when Will meets his muse, the enigmatic and athletic Lily White, he becomes inspired not only to write poetry, but to take guerrilla action in support of poets everywhere. Poetry meets parkour and culture clashes with commerce in this hilarious look at how we measure the value of art.

Publisher: [Victoria, B.C.] : Brindle & Glass, c2011
ISBN: 9781897142547
Branch Call Number: F LAP
Characteristics: 232 p. ; 22 cm

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melwyk May 01, 2012

The story pits husband and wife -- and their worldviews -- against each other. Will is a stay-at-home dad who spends his days working on his poetry epic. He's been doing this for ten years now, and his immensely successful economist wife Judy is beginning to tire of it.

There's more to this book than family dynamics. Will has to deal with jealousy over other poets' successes, with the realization of middle age as he develops a highly inappropriate crush on a young, passionate poetry lover (Lily White, who admits that she's a pretty bad poet herself), and with developing his Big Idea -- setting up a Poet's Preservation Society to support all the indigent writers he knows. Definitely a book to put on the "poets in literature" list!

full review http://indextrious.blogspot.ca/2011/10/happiness-economics.html

d
donnas
Apr 03, 2012

up for Stephen Leacock award 2012
couldn't find Robin Michele LEvy's 'Most of me'

debwalker Oct 23, 2011

"I am frequently asked for book recommendations, and the specification is a well-written novel that isn't incredibly depressing. Happiness Economics is exactly that – a joy to read even though it deals with serious topics – written in a way that doesn't drag your spirits down. It's an oddly hopeful and frequently funny read that reminded me of the late, great Paul Quarrington in all the best ways."
Zoe Whittall
Globe and Mail

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melwyk May 01, 2012

"Judy realized now of course that she'd missed the point about Happiness Economics. What did it matter that economists could assign a dollar value to something that didn't come with a dollar value attached to it? The point was that happiness research consistently showed that the highest value -- the greatest happiness -- was attached not to tangible things but to the intangibles -- to human relationships -- time spent with family and friends. And to the benefits that flowed from strong social policies such as good health care, education, and, yes, culture. The whole point of Happiness Economics was that perhaps governments, when making decisions, shouldn't be so focused on purely economic measures."

melwyk May 01, 2012

"At the moment she was hastily skimming an article about a new branch of economics called Happiness Economics. It was the first she'd heard of it. She liked the idea that economists could assign an exact monetary value to things like divorce, or the death of a loved one, or once-a-week sex. It seemed inherently right to her to be able to measure human happiness in dollars and conclude, for example, that once-a-week sex (compared to once-a-month sex) offered as much happiness as adding tens of thousands of dollars to your bank account.

Happiness ought to be measured in dollars! Then you knew what you were dealing with."

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