April 30, 1902|
January 3, 1995 (aged 92)|
Mount Kisco, New York
|Alma mater||Columbia University|
|Occupation||journalist, author, professor|
|Notable work||Imperial Hearst, America's 60 Families, Modern Woman: The Lost Sex, The Myth of Democracy|
Ferdinand Lundberg (April 30, 1902 – March 1, 1995) was an American journalist known for his frequent and potent criticism of American financial and political institutions. His work has been credited as influences on Robert Caro, Ralph Nader, Betty Friedan, and others.
Early life and education
Described by the Los Angeles Times as "witty, articulate, opinionated, marvelously well-read and not the least bit shy about telling us exactly what he thinks about America and the mess we've made of it", Lundberg was vocal in his contrarian viewpoints, describing the United States as an oligarchy, eviscerating prominent American families including the Rockefellers and Hearsts, and denouncing the United States Constitution while calling for its replacement with a parliamentary system. Several of his dozen-or-so books on these topics were best-sellers.
Lundberg's debut book, Imperial Hearst, was lauded by Foreign Affairs as "an annihilating study of the newspaper magnate" worthy of "wide attention" while, in modern times, Robert Caro and Ralph Nader have both cited Lundberg's America's 60 Families as early influences on themselves. Betty Friedan, meanwhile, wrote The Feminine Mystique as a rebuttal to Lundberg's Modern Woman: The Lost Sex, taking its title from a phrase used by Lundberg in his book.
- Imperial Hearst;: A social biography (1936)
- America's 60 Families (1937)
- Modern Woman: The Lost Sex (1947)
- The Treason of the People (1954)
- The coming world transformation (1963)
- The Rich and the Super-Rich (1968)
- The Rockefeller Syndrome (1968)
- Cracks in the Constitution (1980)
- The Myth of Democracy (1989)
- Politicians and Other Scoundrels (1992)
- The Natural Depravity of Mankind (1994)
- Saxon, Wolfgang (March 3, 1995). "F. Lundberg, 92, Author Who Wrote of the Rich". The New York Times. Retrieved February 20, 2017.
- Kirsch, Jonathan (October 18, 1989). "A Lundberg Attack on Democracy". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 20, 2017.
- "Imperial Hearst". Foreign Affairs.
- Robbins, Christopher (February 17, 2016). "Robert Caro Wonders What New York Is Going To Become". The Gothamist. Archived from the original on January 4, 2017. Retrieved February 18, 2016.
Ferdinand Lundberg wrote a book in the '30s that was one of the greatest examples of political reporting. It's called America's 60 Families. ... It's about how 60 families controlled 95 percent of the wealth in the United States. I came across that book as I was researching the robber barons and I thought it was the greatest book.
- Caro, Robert (May 19, 1995). "Sanctum Sanctorum for Writers". The New York Times. Archived from the original on January 4, 2017. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
- Bender, Marylin (May 19, 1974). "The Businessmen Who Read Business Books". The New York Times. Retrieved February 17, 2017.
- Horowitz, Daniel (2000). Betty Friedan and the Making of The Feminine Mystique: The American Left, the Cold War, and Modern Feminism. University of Massachusetts Press. p. 193. ISBN 1558492763.
- Benson, Adolph B. and Naboth Hedin, eds. (1938) Swedes in America, 1638-1938 (The Swedish American Tercentenary Association. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press) ISBN 978-0-8383-0326-9
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