What an odd lot our ancestors must have been to let themselves get caught up in crazes like the 10th century dancing mania in Italy, or the alarming outbreak of biting mania in 15th century Germany, Italy, and Holland. Holland's 17th century tulipmania proved only economically painful, when wealthy families spent their savings buying and hoarding tulip bulbs, and were left in financial ruin when prices plummeted.

We are not so different from those long-gone dancers, biters, and tulipophiles, because a modern mania is about to descend upon us: March Madness. Sixty-four colleges and universities send their basketball teams into a competition for the vaunted titled of National Champion. It is no mere playoff series.

Document Type

News Article

Publication Date


Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2009 BH Media Group, Inc. This article first appeared in Richmond Times-Dispatch (2009).

Please note that downloads of the article are for private/personal use only.