The Economics of Fashion.  

Does being fashionable really need to be so expensive and bothersome?  According to Thorstein Veblen, an economist who wrote The Theory of the Leisure Class over a century ago, the answer is yes.  Veblen argues that the main point of being fashionable is to gain status by appearing rich and powerful.  This activity asks students to bring in photos of fashionable items and discuss whether these items exhibit conspicuous consumption.

Statistics can be misleading.

With this series of 12 puzzles, you can help your students become more discriminating consumers of economic statistics.   

The Economics of the Wizard of Oz

History teachers sometimes have students read or view The Wizard of Oz while discussing the Populist Movement.  Economics teachers might want to use the story to reinforce these concepts:

  • An increase in the money supply can result in inflation.
  • Inflation results in gainers and losers.
  • Borrowers often benefit from inflation, while lenders often lose.
  • The government can control the money supply and, to some extent, the inflation rate.


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