The World in Depression, 1929–1939


The World in Depression, 1929–1939 is a magisterial account that emphasizes three factors that continue to shape global financial markets: panic, the power of contagion, and the importance of hegemony. This masterpiece of economic history shows why U.S. Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, during the darkest hours of the 2008 global financial crisis, turned to Kindleberger and his peers for guidance.

Praise for The World in Depression, 1929–1939

“The World in Depression is the best book on the subject, and the subject, in turn, is the economically decisive decade of the century so far.”

John Kenneth Galbraith

"[Kindleberger] has written perhaps the finest analytical account of the run-up to the Great Depression and the ensuing run-down from it into mild recovery and eventual world war. [This] brilliant book remains a carefully documented admonition to our leading spirits to 'look to the ends' of what they are currently about."

Times Literary Supplement

"Charles Kindleberger's The World in Depression opened American eyes to the failures of interdependence behind the First Great Depression. DeLong and Eichengreen render great service by bringing this history to today's readers, with a preface that notes grim parallels and rephrases urgent questions for the Eurozone and for the wider world. You can't go wrong by reading Kindleberger―and better late than never."

James K. Galbraith, author of Inequality and Instability: A Study of the World Economy Just Before the Great Crisis.