A Tenured Professor

John Kenneth Galbraith, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $19.95 (197p) ISBN 978-0-395-47100-5
Twenty years have elapsed since the celebrated Harvard economist's last novel ( The Triumph ) but this succinct parable for our times, a rare comedy of point and precision, is well worth the wait. Harvard professor Montgomery Marvin, a clever, mild-mannered economist whose Ph.D thesis examined arcane aspects of refrigerator pricing, devises an approach to economics that he calls the Index of Irrational Expectations, based on the all-too-apparent notion that there is no limit to human folly when greed is the driving force. Buying stocks of irrationally inflated companies short, selling while the price is still high and replacing them cheap when the inevitable decline comes, Marvin and wife Marjie soon amass a fortune. Liberals at heart, they spend the money by endowing peace professorships at military schools and establishing countervailing PACs--money to support candidates for office opposing those helped by wealthy lobbyists. Only when they buy a major arms manufacturer and turn its efforts to peaceful purposes does the sacred defense establishment turn on them. This rueful tale is embellished with countless delightful asides on matters as various as Harvard academic manners and the proper behavior before Congressional committees. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/1990
Release date: 02/01/1990
Hardcover - 257 pages - 978-1-56054-060-1
Paperback - 208 pages - 978-0-618-15455-5
Paperback - 208 pages - 978-1-85619-403-7
Open Ebook - 208 pages - 978-0-547-59561-0
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