Paula Szuchman and Jenny Anderson: Spousonomics
heated argument with your spouse, do general marketing concepts come to mind as
a way of reaching a compromise? No? Spousonomics is a witty book that suggests
that using economic principles is exactly what we need to resolve our relationship
conflicts. By following business-oriented steps, each side would be able to see
things from a fresh perspective; thus redefining ‘winning’ the argument.
authors Paula Szuchman and Jenny Anderson were struck with the idea that
economics could be used for something other than academia and work, they got
down to nation-wide surveys and research, and spent their time delving through
economic books to break down concepts like trade-offs, division of labour, and loss
aversion, and build them up again to apply to real-life marriage problems.
Each one of
the ten chapters tackles one concept, providing a case study of a married couple
who had faced a problem and what they did or should have done to solve it. The book
is written in a way that is both thought-provoking and funny, though it mainly
discusses economic topics. It’s interesting that these economic theories are
actually enjoyable to read when applied to real life with relevant explanations.
comparing marriage to business doesn’t sound very romantic, it helps putting
problems into a practical perspective. By balancing the costs and benefits of
each argument, a couple is more likely to reach a solution that will satisfy
both sides and thus make it easier to achieve peace of mind and a happy home. However,
it is admittedly hard work, and the book doesn’t omit the fact that it takes
training to get used to solving problems that way.
Spousonomics focuses more on life examples with explicit humour than
economic jargon. Better yet, it’s a change from most relationship books that
only drag out the typical advice of keeping a journal. Usually perceived as one
of the causes of marital problems, this book proves that economics can be part
of the solution as well.