yup, saw ur email. end of semesters and apps have kept me pretty busy but I will definitely respond with some reflections and thoughts once this season is over.
I think there is inherent appeal to Levitt's work in its applicability that's missing from much academic literature. And I wouldn't fret about math, it's just a skillset for research. economic intuition is ultimately what matters. There's been litany of famous economists both past and present whose work doesn't rely on too advanced math.
I'll throw out an econ related book recommendation real quick Kicking Away the Ladder by Ha Joon Chang as well as his other work. he's a heterodox economist that does a lot of quasi marxist historical analysis of development. He's also very controversial but I think broadens the scope of discourse.
Yep, the applicability of his work is a reason why applied micro can be so appealing.
Yeah, I definitely agree with you about economic intuition being the key. I've noticed a lot of my peers already having their intuition being silohed into one philosophical brand of economics (Austrian, which gets pushed heavily in my undergrad program) which disturbs me. Some economic research takes a very unscientific approach because of how politically involved economists can be. That is why I'm not so worried about math because a lot of the best research uses the most simplisitc mathematical techniques. I'll just never fool myself into believing I'll be published in Econometrica or something lol.
And no rush on getting back to me. That paper will be on the backburner for a while.
Yeah, part of me really admires the hell out of his creativity and approach but another part of me thinks his work can be amateurish.
I saw critique that said the second book was weaker because he was relying on research he himself did not conduct and he wasn't as skeptical of it as he should be, but he and Dubner both seem to really enjoy being contrarian for its own sake.
So I just browsed through Amazon's best books of 2012 list and got the following:
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (thanks to irondarts)
The Thief by Fuminori Nakamura
Fooling Houdini by Alex Stone
Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt by Chris Hedges
How to be a Person: The Strangers Guide to College, Sex, Intoxicants, Tacos, and Life Itself