The Body Economic

  • by David Stuckler, Sanjay Basu
  • Narrated by Tim Andres Pabon
  • 6 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Politicians have talked endlessly about the seismic economic and social impacts of the recent financial crisis, but many continue to ignore its disastrous effects on human health - and have even exacerbated them, by adopting harsh austerity measures and cutting key social programs at a time when constituents need them most. The result, as pioneering public health experts David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu reveal in this provocative audiobook, is that many countries have turned their recessions into veritable epidemics, ruining or extinguishing thousands of lives in a misguided attempt to balance budgets and shore up financial markets. Yet, sound alternative policies could instead help improve economies and protect public health at the same time.
In The Body Economic, Stuckler and Basu mine data from around the globe and throughout history to show how government policy becomes a matter of life and death during financial crises. In a series of historical case studies stretching from 1930s America, to Russia and Indonesia in the 1990s, to present-day Greece, Britain, Spain, and the U.S., Stuckler and Basu reveal that governmental mismanagement of financial strife has resulted in a grim array of human tragedies, from suicides to HIV infections. Yet, people can and do stay healthy, and even get healthier, during downturns. During the Great Depression, U.S. deaths actually plummeted, and today Iceland, Norway, and Japan are happier and healthier than ever, proof that public wellbeing need not be sacrificed for fiscal health.
Full of shocking and counterintuitive revelations and bold policy recommendations, The Body Economic offers an alternative to austerity - one that will prevent widespread suffering, both now and in the future.


What the Critics Say

"A dramatic study emphasizing some of the combined consequences of ideological obsessions and bureaucratic thoughtlessness." (Kirkus Reviews)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Compulsory Read

Would you consider the audio edition of The Body Economic to be better than the print version?

This was an easy book to listen too... maybe, easier than to read.

What about Tim Andres Pabon’s performance did you like?


Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I had a very strong emotional reaction to this book, felt it should be made a compulsory 'read' or 'listen to' in regards to the current political policies that are being experienced by us the ordinary people, in other words the consequences of the austerity experiment here in UK and around the world. Extremely thought provoking book.

Any additional comments?

I was also unable to stop listening to this audio book the information relayed although statistical at times was really gripping. Cannot recommend it enough...

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A great book - interesting read - one caveat.

I recommend this book it was well read with truly interesting material - recommended. However, it could really do with a supplementary PDF with the cited sources and links to studies, as other economic audibles (e.g... pikkety) and the reat courses audibles. That would be welcome addition and compliment the book.

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- Ranjit

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-05-2013
  • Publisher: Gildan Media, LLC