A FLEET OF A THOUSAND COLONISTS are blown off course for weeks by a series of violent cyclones, eventually crashing onto the reefs of a large uncharted island. All of their ships and provisions are lost to sea. They wash ashore, all surviving the stormy night. As morning breaks they begin their search for water and possible food sources.
The survivors struggle in this foreign land at first. They collect crabs at the rocky tideline, forage along the dense forest-edge, and weave simple palm leaf baskets to collect the many unidentifiable fruits they find in the forest. Eventually they begin to be more successful at fishing and manage to get some shoots of wild yam-like tubers to sprout in small raised-mound gardens. Eventually they begin to have enough food and to build stronger, larger, and more permanent shelters.
In time they have enough goods to live in relative comfort and began to produce more of what they each specialize in than they need to survive. They do this in order to trade the products they specialize in for other things they need or want. A fisher catches an extra basket of fish, for example, to trade for someone else’s extra yams. This way both of them end up with more variation than they might otherwise. READ MORE…
1000 CASTAWAYS: FUNDAMENTALS OF ECONOMICS is now available-