Monday, November 07, 2005

Those Crazy Expensive Textbooks

One of my favorite economic journalists, James Surowiecki at the New Yorker, wrote a little piece on the business of selling textbooks. I reported on Dutch publishers when I was working for Reuters in Amsterdam and now, at law school, I feel the pain of paying hundreds of dollars for my textbooks and other study aids. Surowiecki doesn't discuss one factor at great length: some big-name professors get students to buy textbooks they wrote or co-wrote. I have on my bookshelf three books by one of the favorite professors at Northwestern, Marshall Shapo - his big textbook, his supplemental "hornbook" and a "how to survive law school" book he co-wrote with his wife. Not a bad deal, professor :) And it may be difficult to sell the books I had highlighted to death.

As for the Dutch publishers, two of my big textbooks are published by WoltersKluwer.

No comments: