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Bread and bullets

Author

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  • Akerlof, George A.
  • Snower, Dennis J.

Abstract

Standard economics omits the role of narratives (the stories that people tell themselves and others) when they make all kinds of decisions. Narratives play a role in understanding the environment; focusing attention; predicting events; motivating action; assigning social roles and identities; defining power relations; and establishing and conveying social norms. This paper describes the role narratives play in decision making, as it also juxtaposes this description against the backdrop of the Bolshevik-spawned narrative that played a critical role in the history of Russia and the Soviet Union in the 20th Century.

Suggested Citation

  • Akerlof, George A. & Snower, Dennis J., 2016. "Bread and bullets," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 126(PB), pages 58-71.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:126:y:2016:i:pb:p:58-71
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2015.10.021
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
    2. Akerlof George A & Kranton Rachel, 2010. "Identity Economics," The Economists' Voice, De Gruyter, vol. 7(2), pages 1-3, June.
    3. Richard E. Ericson, 1991. "The Classical Soviet-Type Economy: Nature of the System and Implications for Reform," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(4), pages 11-27, Fall.
    4. Ernst Fehr & Urs Fischbacher, 2004. "Social norms and human cooperation," Macroeconomics 0409026, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Joseph R. Priester & Richard E. Petty & Kiwan Park, 2007. "Whence Univalent Ambivalence? From the Anticipation of Conflicting Reactions," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(1), pages 11-21, March.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Marina Della Giusta & Sarah Jewell & Danica Vukadinovic Greetham, 2017. "Beliefs, Exams and Social Media: A Study of Girls and Boys in the UK," Economics & Management Discussion Papers em-dp2017-02, Henley Business School, Reading University.
    2. Dohse, Dirk & Lim, Cheng Yee, 2016. "Macro-geographic location and internet adoption in poor countries: What is behind the persistent digital gap?," Kiel Working Papers 2067, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    3. Dorian Jullien, 2017. "Under Risk, Over Time, Regarding Other People: Language and Rationality Within Three Dimensions
      [Face au risque, dans le temps, par rapport aux autres : langage et rationalité dans trois dimensions
      ," Post-Print halshs-01651042, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Narrative; Motivation; Attention; Prediction; Identity; Social assignment;

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D04 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Policy: Formulation; Implementation; Evaluation
    • D20 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - General
    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D30 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - General
    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities
    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • E02 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - Institutions and the Macroeconomy
    • E03 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - Behavioral Macroeconomics

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