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Jane Austen, Game Theorist

April 21, 2015 @ 12:00 am

About the Author — Michael Chwe, author of Jane Austen, Game Theorist, is professor of political science at UCLA. He lives in Santa Monica and has two children, a son attending Swarthmore College and a daughter attending Santa Monica High School. His wife, Namhee Lee, is also on the UCLA faculty. 

Michael received his doctorate in economics at Northwestern University and his bachelor’s at Caltech. He has previously been on the faculty of the University of Chicago (economics) and New York University (political science). His research centers on game theory and its applications to social movements, voting and information aggregation, social networks, monetary policy, violence, and literature. He has served as co-editor of the American Political Science Review and on the editorial boards of the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization and the American Journal of Sociology. Michael was born and raised in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 

Michael became interested in Jane Austen after watching movies and reading books with his children. He has coached his children’s soccer teams, worked in the booth for their theater performances, and served as a PTA officer. For fun, he likes to play music with his children and his friends, and enjoys performing arts of all kinds. He also builds lithophones which have been used in concert performances. He enjoys traveling and recently kayaked the Grand Canal in Venice with his wife.

About the Book — 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–over a century before its mathematical development during the Cold War. Jane Austen, Game Theorist shows how this beloved writer theorized choice and preferences, prized strategic thinking, and analyzed why superiors are often strategically clueless about inferiors. Exploring a diverse range of literature and folktales, this book illustrates the wide relevance of game theory and how, fundamentally, we are all strategic thinkers.


April 21, 2015
12:00 am
Event Category:


Falls Church VA
Falls Church United States


Michael Chwe