California State University, Northridge WordmarkOviatt Library WordmarkOviatt Library Catalog Wordmark
Author Chwe, Michael Suk-Young, 1965-
Title Jane Austen, game theorist / Michael Suk-Young Chwe.
Published Princeton ; Oxford : Princeton Univesrsity Press, [2013]
Book Cover

 Floor4  PR4038.G36 C49 2013    IN LIBRARY
Description xii, 272 pages ; 24 cm
Content Type text
Format volume
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 235-249) and index.
Contents The argument -- Game theory in context. Rational choice theory ; Game theory ; Strategic thinking ; How game theory is useful ; Criticisms ; Game theory and literature -- Folktales and civil rights -- Flossie and the fox -- Jane Austen's six novels. Pride and prejudice ; Sense and sensibility ; Persuasion ; Northanger Abbey ; Mansfield Park ; Emma -- Austen's foundations of game theory. Choice ; Preferences ; Revealed preferences ; Names for strategic thinking ; Strategic sophomores ; Eyes -- Austen's competing models. Emotions ; Instincts ; Habits ; Rules ; Social factors ; Ideology ; Intoxication ; Constraints -- Austen on what strategic thinking is not. Strategic thinking is not selfish ; Strategic thinking is not moralistic ; Strategic thinking is not economistic ; Strategic thinking is not about winning inconsequential games -- Austen's innovations. Partners in strategic manipulation ; Strategizing about yourself ; Preference change ; Constancy -- Austen on strategic thinking's disadvantages -- Austen's intentions -- Austen on cluelessness. Lack of natural ability ; Social distance ; Excessive self-reference ; High-status people are not supposed to enter the minds of low-status people ; Presumption sometimes work ; Decisive blunders -- Real-world cluelessness. Cluelessness is easier ; Difficulty embodying low-status others ; Investing in social status ; Improving your bargaining position ; Empathy prevention ; Calling people animals -- Concluding remarks.
Summary "Game theory--the study of how people make choices while interacting with others--is one of the most popular technical approaches in social science today. But as Michael Chwe reveals in his insightful new book, Jane Austen explored game theory's core ideas in her six novels roughly two hundred years ago. Jane Austen, Game Theorist shows how this beloved writer theorized choice and preferences, prized strategic thinking, argued that jointly strategizing with a partner is the surest foundation for intimacy, and analyzed why superiors are often strategically clueless about inferiors. With a diverse range of literature and folktales, this book illustrates the wide relevance of game theory and how, fundamentally, we are all strategic thinkers. Although game theory's mathematical development began in the Cold War 1950s, Chwe finds that game theory has earlier subversive historical roots in Austen's novels and in "folk game theory" traditions, including African American folktales. Chwe makes the case that these literary forebears are game theory's true scientific predecessors. He considers how Austen in particular analyzed "cluelessness"--the conspicuous absence of strategic thinking--and how her sharp observations apply to a variety of situations, including U.S. military blunders in Iraq and Vietnam. Jane Austen, Game Theorist brings together the study of literature and social science in an original and surprising way."--Publisher's website.
Subject Austen, Jane, 1775-1817 -- Criticism and interpretation.
Game theory in literature.
Game theory -- Social aspects.
Rational choice theory.
ISBN 9780691155760 (cloth : acid-free paper)
0691155763 (cloth : acid-free paper)
Standard # 40022179546
OCLC number 820123480