Popes and Bankers: A Cultural History of Credit and Debt, from Aristotle to AIG : Book Review:

About six months ago I watched a TV series on history of money on Discovery Channel. The series talked about the evolution of money from biblical to the present times. As credit and debt formed an integral part of evolution of money and its exchange, the series touched credit and debt whenever the need arise. I found the series pretty interesting and shared the excerpts with friends whenever I got the opportunity.

So when I got the opportunity to review Jack Cashill's most recent book “Popes and Bankers: A Cultural History of Credit and Debt” I approached the book with much interest.

About the book and what I feel:

The book is an attempt to explore the history of credit and debt and how the factors that led to the evolution of credit and debt have led to the current economic crisis (American economic crisis). (Going by writer’s take on the subject, it’ll not be too wrong to say that, the book is more critical on present day average American’s habit of opting for loans beyond his/her means to pay the loan back; than on the bankers).

Looking towards Aristotle, Shakespeare, the Medici, Bernie Madoff, and others, the author uncovers an interesting narrative illuminating the history of credit and debt. Beginning with the biblical times, the book tries to emphasize the role played by prominent religions influencing the contemporary public thought; and how the issue of credit and debt kept swinging between "pious restraint" and "economic ambition" till present times.

Although the title of the book chosen by the writer gives an impression that the book is for readers with academic interest; I found the book very readable, something any person inquisitive about the connect between past and present will find interesting. In short, the book can be kept into the category, which even if makes the reader disagree countless of times; makes the reader think after every page, chapter and the entire read.

Fact wise the book introduces, even a prolific reader to ample of information and thus satisfactorily quenches the information thirst of those readers who picked the book for some tangible facts.

I would recommend this book.

[ I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their Book Review Program For Bloggers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255] --------

No comments