Sven Beckert is Laird Bell Professor of History at Harvard University, and Visiting Professor of Management at Harvard Business School. Beckert’s research and teaching center on the history of the United States in the nineteenth century, with a particular emphasis on the history of capitalism, including its economic, social, political and global dimensions.
Beckert teaches courses on the political economy of modern capitalism, the history of American capitalism, Gilded Age America, labor history, global capitalism and the history of European capitalism. Together with a group of students he has written on the historical connections between Harvard and slavery and published Harvard and Slavery: Seeking a Forgotten History.
Currently he is at work on a history of capitalism.
Beckert’s work has been supported by the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Humboldt Foundation, the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies, and the New York Public Library’s Center for Scholars and Writers, among others. He has lectured all over the world.
"Masterly... Deeply researched and eminently readable, "Empire of Cotton" gives new insight into the relentless expansion of global capitalism. With graceful prose and a clear and compelling argument, Beckert not only charts the expansion of cotton capitalism... he addresses the conditions of enslaved workers in the fields and wage workers in the factories. An astonishing achievement"