Underrated books in political science or economics

I had occasion to reflect on this topic today as I was packing my books in preparation for a move. There are two that come immediately to mind, and I think they are must-reads for not just the specific audience of political science or economics readers, but also to the general public.

The True Believer, by Eric Hoffer. This book taxonomizes and characterizes mass movements brilliantly and with extremely elegant, sophisticated analysis. I think you should read this book with Hayek because Hayek, as smart as he is, has limits, and does not engage much beyond an analysis of why markets are good. Reality of course is more complex than markets, and markets should be understood in context of the cultural, institutional, and historical dynamics it exists in.

The Once and Future King, T.H. White. No, you shouldn’t read the book  because it got plugged in X-Men. You should read the book because it really is a brilliant piece of work and there are many individual passages that are superb explications of political and economic systems. As a work of literature it is sublime.

I’ll add to this later when I think of something.

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