David Saul Landes (usually cited as David S. Landes; April 29, 1924 – August 17, 2013) was a professor of economics and of history at Harvard University.[1] He is the author of Bankers and Pashas, Revolution in Time, The Unbound Prometheus, The Wealth and Poverty of Nations, and Dynasties.[2] Such works have received both praise for detailed retelling of economic history, as well as scorn on charges of Eurocentrism, a charge he openly embraced, arguing that an explanation for an economic miracle that happened originally only in Europe must of necessity be a Eurocentric analysis.

Landes earned a Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1953 and an A.B. from City College of New York in 1942.[3]

The historian Niall Ferguson called him one of his "most revered mentors".[4]

Landes had a scholarly disagreement with Stephen Marglin over the Industrial Revolution.

His son is Richard Landes, the American historian and author, an associate professor in the Department of History at Boston University.


  • Landes, David S. (2007). Dynasties: Fortunes and Misfortunes of the World's Great Family Businesses: Why Some Are So Rich and Some So Poor. New York: Viking. ISBN 0-670-03338-3. 
  • Landes, David S. (1998). The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some Are So Rich and Some So Poor. New York: W.W. Norton. ISBN 0-393-04017-8. 
  • Landes, David S. (1983). Revolution in Time. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-674-00282-2. 
  • Landes, David. S. (1969). The Unbound Prometheus: Technological Change and Industrial Development in Western Europe from 1750 to the Present. Cambridge, New York: Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge. ISBN 0-521-09418-6. 
  • Landes, David S., Bankers and Pashas: International Finance and Economic Imperialism in Egypt (1958) [1]


  1. ^ "David Landes In Memoriam (1924–2013)". Harvard University. August 20, 2013. 
  2. ^ Morris, Charles (29 October 2006). "Dynasties – By David S. Landes – Books - Review – New York Times". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 1 January 2011. 
  3. ^ Douglas Martin (7 September 2013). "David S. Landes, Historian and Author, Is Dead at 89". The New York Times. 
  4. ^ http://www.hayfestival.com/p-3474-niall-ferguson.aspx