NYS Writers Institute, October 11, 2011
Nasar’s newest book is A Grand Pursuit: The Story of Economic Genius (2011), a sweeping history of the development of modern economics. From the London of Dickens to 21st century Calcutta, the book emphasizes the dynamic and eccentric personalities who have helped determine the ways in which markets are conceptualized and controlled. Fortune magazine said, “[This] is the story of the evolution of a radical, planet-reshaping idea…The canvas is epic. The details are fresh, at times startling… If only Econ 101 had been this interesting!” The reviewer for The Economist said, “Grand Pursuit is a history of economics which is full of flesh, bloom and warmth. The author demonstrates that there is far more to economics than Thomas Carlyle’s ‘dismal science’. And she does so with all the style and panache that you would expect from the author of A Beautiful Mind.”
Published in thirty languages and a landmark in the field of intellectual biography, A Beautiful Mind explores and explains John Nash’s brilliant mathematical achievements while offering a sensitive depiction of his battles with mental illness. The Boston Globe reviewer said, “[A Beautiful Mind] might be compared to a Rembrandt portrait, filled with somber shadows and radiant light effects… superbly written and eminently fascinating…simply a beautiful book.” The book impressed the medical community as much as it did the mainstream press, drawing favorable reviews in the New England Journal of Medicine and the Canadian Medical Journal among other publications. Neurologist and bestselling author Oliver Sacks called it, “Deeply interesting and extraordinarily moving.”
Directed by Ron Howard, the 2001 film, A Beautiful Mind, starred Russell Crowe, Ed Harris and Jennifer Connolly. It received Academy Awards for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Picture, Best Director and Best Supporting Actress.
Sylvia Nasar grew up in Germany and Turkey, the daughter of a German mother and Uzbek father who served as the CIA station chief in Ankara. A New York Times economics correspondent from 1991 to 1999, she currently holds the Knight Chair in Business Journalism at Columbia University. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Business Week and the New York Times Book Review, among other publications.
For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst.