Steven G. Medema is the university distinguished professor of economics at the University of Colorado Denver. He is series editor of the Oxford Studies in the History of Economics, book review editor for the History of Political Economy journal, and he serves on the editorial boards of eight journals of the history of economics. He was editor of the Journal of the History of Economic Thought, president of the History of Economics Society, and served on the Executive Committee and Scientific Council of the European Society for the History of Economic Thought. He lives in Denver.
Medema, an economics professor at Duke University, presents short essays about the most significant developments in economic history. Part of the Sterling Milestones series, this stand-alone volume is intended for a general audience. Entries appear in chronological order, beginning with Hesiod's Works and Days (circa 700 B.C.E.) and concluding with the introduction of cryptocurrency in 2009. As noted in the introduction, concepts are presented in basic terms in order to be accessible to a wide audience. Taking the reader several steps beyond a typical encyclopedia entry, Medema places each development in perspective relative to the broader picture of economic history. For example, Pythagoras' emphasis on numerical modeling of complex relationships is examined as the basis for the quantitative approach of modern economic theory. The book is beautifully illustrated and includes suggestions for further reading on every topic covered. The breadth and international scope of this volume is notable; most comparable books address only American economic history or limit their coverage to a shorter time span. A good choice for large public libraries. --Booklist