The Wealth and Poverty of Nations
by David S Landes
The Wealth and Poverty of Nations (1998) was written by Harvard economics and history professor David Landes (1924-2013). An unlikely bestseller that took on Adam Smith’s key question—why some nations are rich and others poor—it’s also a great read. See what our experts have said about this book and why it’s so important below:
Recommendations from our site
“Another huge historical sweep on economic development and, perhaps controversially, this time more a view of why the West has been particularly successful and other countries have not.” Read more...
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Stephen D King, Economist
“He provides an explanation for why Western Europe was the cradle for modern economic growth and looks at the development of the institutions that made modern economic development possible.” Read more...
The best books on Economics in the Real World
John Kay, Economist
“Landes argues, for example, that the most significant invention of the last 800 years was the mechanical clock, because until you…can reliably subdivide time, you can’t have capitalism” Read more...
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Nick Harkaway, Novelist
“It’s the most erudite examination of what causes economic development and growth that’s been written in many decades.” Read more...
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Sean Turnell, Economist
“The Wealth And Poverty of Nations is one of several really fantastic economic history books of recent times.” Read more...
Diane Coyle, Economist
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