Journalistic visits with a baker's dozen of American economists and equal numbers of Soviet bloc counterparts and Western European colleagues. The sketches, originally written in 1970 for the Turin publication La Stampa, are chatty, slick and shallow; the subjects are more victimized than analyzed. Levi reserves praise for the Americans, who include Paul Samuelson, Walter Heller, Milton Friedman, Paul McCracken, Wassily Leontiev, Gardner Ackley, and two non-economists, Henry Ford II and nco-Malthusian Jay Forrester. The latter is trailed by Levi with a ""Golly gee, Mr. Science"" attitude. Levi's Eastern European tour begins with 92-year-old Muscovite Professor Strumilin, who had a white beard and ""a tremendously mobile face"" and sounds like the father of us all. Soviet, Hungarian, Czech and Yugoslav practitioners are interviewed with relatively little deference; the occasions are largely used to expound the author's opinions on Soviet bloc turns and travails. Kenneth Galbraith, here counted as a European, is interrogated along with Nicholas Kaldor, Bank of Italy Governor Guido Carli, and others. In conclusion Levi asks if economics can justify its existence as a science; it seems doubtful that he could judge.