The NBER Reporter 2011 Number 2: Books
The Changing Body
The Changing Body -- Health, Nutrition, and Human Development in the Western World since 1700, by Roderick Floud, Robert W. Fogel, Bernard Harris, and Sok Chul Hong, is available from Cambridge University Press. The paperback price is $32.99 and the hardcover price is $90.00.
Humans have become much taller and heavier, and are experiencing healthier and longer lives than ever before in human history. However, only recently have historians, economists, human biologists, and demographers linked the changing size, shape, and capability of the human body to economic and demographic change. This groundbreaking volume presents an introduction to the field of anthropometric history, surveying the causes and consequences of changes in health and mortality, diet, and the disease environment in Europe and the United States since 1700. It examines how we define and measure health and nutrition, as well as such key issues as whether increased longevity contributes to greater productivity or rather imposes burdens on society through higher costs for health care and pensions.
Floud is on leave from his position as an NBER Research Associate in the Program on the Development of the American Economy. He is on the faculty of Gresham College in England. Fogel is a Research Associate in the NBER's Programs on Aging and the Development of the American Economy. He is also Director of the Center for Population Economics at the University of Chicago. Bernard Harris is Professor of the History of Social Policy at the University of Southampton, and Sok Chul Hong is assistant professor of economics at Sogang University, South Korea.
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