November 21, 2008 7:36AM

Russell Roberts: A Novel Approach

Russell Roberts, of NPR, Cafe Hayek, and EconTalk fame, will talk about his new book The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity at a Cato Book Forum at noon on Monday, December 1.

Earlier this fall, George Will wrote of Roberts' book in Newsweek

Improbable as it might seem, perhaps the most important fact for a voter or politician to know is: No one can make a pencil. That truth is the essence of a novella that is, remarkably, both didactic and romantic. Even more remarkable, its author is an economist. If you read Russell Roberts's The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity, you will see the world afresh — unless you already understand Friedrich Hayek's idea of spontaneous order. Roberts sets his story in the Bay Area, where some Stanford students are indignant because a Big Box store doubled its prices after an earthquake. A student leader plans to protest Stanford's acceptance of a large gift from Big Box. The student's economics professor, Ruth, rather than attempting to dissuade him, begins leading him and his classmates to an understanding of prices, markets and the marvel of social cooperation.

See for yourself on December 1, the Monday after Thanksgiving, with comments by reformed literature Ph.D. Nick Gillespie.