Mackerel as a Currency - the Secret Prison Economy

Graham Watson

11th March 2017

This is one of the most unusual demonstrations of the charcteristics and functions of money that I have come across. Ever. It looks at how in US prisons, mackerel - yes, you read that correctly - have become a unit of currency. This animated clip demonstrates why, and how that is possible.

Mackerel as a currency - the secret prison economy

My favourite bits of the clip are where the difference between "eating macks" and "money macks" is discussed. And the day when hyperinflation came to town.

Graham Watson

Graham Watson has taught Economics for over twenty years. He contributes to Tutor2U, reads voraciously and is interested in all aspects of Teaching and Learning.

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