War Movies and Economics: Lessons from Hollywood’s Adaptations of Military Conflict, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

War Movies and Economics

Lessons from Hollywood’s Adaptations of Military Conflict, 1st Edition

Edited by Laura J. Ahlstrom, Franklin G. Mixon, Jr.


144 pages | 13 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780367275617
pub: 2020-06-09
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 9th June 2020
Hardback: 9780367275600
pub: 2020-06-09
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 9th June 2020

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War Movies and Economics: Lessons from Hollywood’s Adaptations of Military Conflict applies ongoing research in the relatively new genre of economics in popular media to Hollywood’s war movies. Whether inadvertently or purposefully, these movies provide numerous examples of how economic principles often play an important role in military conflict.

The authors of the chapters included in this edited collection work to illustrate economics lessons portrayed in adaptations such as Band of Brothers, Conspiracy, The Dirty Dozen, Dunkirk, Memphis Belle, Saving Private Ryan, Schindler’s List, Spartacus, Stalag 17 and Valkyrie. Aspects of these stories show how key economic principles of scarcity, limited resources and incentives play important roles in military conflict. The movies also provide an avenue for discussion of the economics of public goods provision, the modern economic theory of bureaucracy, and various game-theoretic concepts such as strategic moves and commitment devices. Where applicable, lessons from closely related fields such as management are also provided.

This book is ideal reading for students of economics looking for an approachable route to understanding basic principles of economics and game theory. It is also accessible to amateur and professional historians, and any reader interested in popular culture as it relates to television, movies, and military history.

Table of Contents

1) War movies and economics: a survey of the literature

Carlos J. Asarta, Zachary Ferrara and Franklin G. Mixon, Jr.

2) ‘45 cigarettes, the price has gone up’: economics in Stalag 17

Joshua C. Hall and Daniel D. Bonneau

3) Did a game-theoretic device save the Lone Survivor?

Franklin G. Mixon, Jr. and Carlos J. Asarta

4) The ultimatum game in The Dirty Dozen: analytical and behavioral strategies

Diego Méndez-Carbajo

5) The private provision of a public good: an examination of Hollywood’s adaptation of the Third Servile War

Laura J. Ahlstrom and Franklin G. Mixon, Jr.

6) The Battle of Dunkirk: analyzing economics principles in two motion picture portrayals of an epic retreat

Chandini Sankaran and Sankaran Ramanathan

7) 'Right in the pickle barrel’: Memphis Belle and the core concepts of economics

Rebecca G. Chambers and Franklin G. Mixon, Jr.

8) Slow and deliberative or fast and intuitive? systems of judgment in Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers

Franklin G. Mixon, Jr. and Kamal P. Upadhyaya

About the Editors

Laura J. Ahlstromis an Assistant Professor of Economics at Oklahoma State University, USA.

Franklin G. Mixon, Jr. is the Violet Litchfield and Thomas Bryant Buck Jr. Professor of Economics, and Director of the Center for Economic Education, at Columbus State University, USA.

About the Series

Routledge Economics and Popular Culture Series

Ever wondered how the key concepts of central banking can be explained through the songs from Hamilton?

Or what you can learn about entrepreneurs and the role of ethics in business from Jurassic World?

Or what the 80-year career of Wonder Woman can teach us about the evolving role of women in the workplace?

These questions, and many more, are answered in the Routledge Economics and Popular Culture series. Each book in this series demonstrates that blockbuster franchises, smash hits on Broadway, comic book creations, and bestselling novels, all provide perfect examples of key economic ideas and principles in practice. Written in a clear and concise style, and assuming no previous background in economics, these books demonstrate that the ‘dismal science’ can be a lot more fun than you might think.

Proposals for new books in the series can be sent to the Routledge editor: [email protected]

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / Theory
PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / History & Criticism
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture