The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
  • The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
  • The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
  • The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
  • The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
  • The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves
ISBN: 006145205X
EAN13: 9780061452055
Language: English
Release Date: May 18, 2010
Pages: 448
Dimensions: 1.4" H x 9.1" L x 6.4" W
Weight: 1.35 lbs.
Format: Hardcover
Publisher:
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Book Overview

Life is getting better--and at an accelerating rate. Food availability, income, and life span are up; disease, child mortality, and violence are down -- all across the globe. Though the world is far from perfect, necessities and luxuries alike are getting cheaper; population growth is slowing; Africa is following Asia out of poverty; the Internet, the mobile phone, and container shipping are enriching people's lives as never before. The pessimists who dominate public discourse insist that we will soon reach a turning point and things will start to get worse. But they have been saying this for two hundred years.

Yet Matt Ridley does more than describe how things are getting better. He explains why. Prosperity comes from everybody working for everybody else. The habit of exchange and specialization--which started more than 100,000 years ago--has created a collective brain that sets human living standards on a rising trend. The mutual dependence, trust, and sharing that result are causes for hope, not despair.

This bold book covers the entire sweep of human history, from the Stone Age to the Internet, from the stagnation of the Ming empire to the invention of the steam engine, from the population explosion to the likely consequences of climate change. It ends with a confident assertion that thanks to the ceaseless capacity of the human race for innovative Read More chevron_right

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