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Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

Steven D. Levitt is an economist who analyzes statistical data to unearth surprising connections and behaviors. In Freakonomics, he and co-author Stephen J. Dubner detail many of these cases. He finds test scores that indicate cheating teachers in Chicago, tournament records that indicate cheating among sumo wrestlers, and he claims that reading to your children when they're young doesn't help them academically. His most controversial connection is that legalization of abortion has led to lesser crime. Freakonomics has received mostly positive reviews with Fortune Magazine saying, "There is no obvious leitmotif, ideological or otherwise, to Levitt's work, and that is perhaps its greatest charm. In his hands, economics, far from being a dismal science, is a tool for the curious."
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Wall Street Journal review by Steven E. Landsburg

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Washington Post review by Gregg Easterbrook

Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
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