I finally finished E.F. Schumacher's book ( I've been reading it since late November) Small is Beautiful: Economics As If People Mattered. This book in conjunction with the Ecological Economics course that I attended last summer has broadened my view of the world. I had a humanities bias: if it didn't ask or address the big questions I wasn't interested. And in many ways, economics doesn't. That's because economists are only concerned about growth--constant, illusory growth. Schumacher says that this attitude only alienates people and greedily devours resources that are not unlimited. When economies, political powers, corporations become too big they become unconcerned with individuals unless they can deliver consumption or votes. This is not how humans are designed to relate to each other or the world.
The book is only two years younger than I am and still has much to say about economics of our current temporal position. There aren't many economic theories that can say that and also contain voluminous amounts of wisdom. Try reading this book, Mr. Bernake. You too!
Next up--Joseph Pearce's update--Small Is Still Beautiful: Economics As If Families Mattered.