This week, TFAS is bringing even more opportunities for our alumni, supporters and friends to be “life-long learners” with new book recommendations. Read below for title suggestions from TFAS faculty and staff on what to check out from the library or pick up at a bookstore.
If you are shopping on Amazon, please visit smile.amazon.com and choose “The Fund for American Studies” to designate TFAS to receive 0.5% of your total purchase each time you shop, at no extra cost to you. Find more reading suggestions from the TFAS network in part one and part two.
FTE Professor and Associate Professor at Hillsdale College
“You will never again be confused by differences in political opinion, and you’ll square yourself away, too.”
“A must read for anyone interested in why Government charity is not charity, and how a desire to do good can corrupt the law.”
Professor of Political Economy, TFAS Prague
“Don Lavoie taught for TFAS Prague in its early years. Lavoie coined the term ‘knowledge problem’ to describe the problem with central economic planning. The book’s title also has a second meaning: Lavoie thought of himself as having left-wing values but, because of his knowledge of economics, appreciated the ability of free markets to liberate and empower the most vulnerable in society. The book gives an accessible overview of different types of economic systems, and examines the problems with policy proposals that fall short of full blown socialism. In a time when both left and right are calling for more central direction of the economy, Lavoie’s message is as relevant as ever.”
“While most of my reading is non-fiction, occasionally I read a work of fiction that excels in presenting truths about life. In ‘The Man Who Loved Dogs,’ Cuban author Leonardo Paduro tells the story of the assassination of Leon Trotsky. Taking the reader on a tour of Spain during the Civil War, the Soviet Union in the Stalin years, Mexico in 1940, and Cuba in the 1990s, Paduro writes a page turner that is part historical fiction, part psychological thriller. This is a book that screams to be made into a feature-length film. Alas, that will wait for a Hollywood that wants to produce anti-communist films. Written in 2009 and translated into English in 2014, this is a book I highly recommend.”
FTE Mentor Teacher and Teacher at West Leyden High School, Northlake, Illinois
“This book answered a big question that I had for a long time: if free enterprise is the way to wealth for a country, then why don’t developing countries just go capitalist and grow? My students always have this very same question when we do a Hans Rosling-style data plotting exercise showing the link between a country’s economic freedom and its GNI. Hernando de Soto shows, in a clear way and a very readable book, that a country can’t just decide to go capitalist. The institutions that support a free enterprise economy are so essential that a free enterprise economy can’t be built without them. In places where those institutions don’t exist, they have to be built — and that’s hard work, both in a practical and a political sense.”