Chinese Business History: Interpretive Trends and Priorities for the Future

By Robert Gardella; Jane K. Leonard et al. | Go to book overview
Save to active project

superior approach? Despite the ever growing volume of work, business- government relations have yet to produce a Chandler.

Finally, industrial relations and human resource policies have commanded growing attention. The decline of organized labor has emphasized the importance of labor issues that are unrelated or only indirectly related to traditional subjects like formal organization, collective bargaining, and strikes.

Other contemporary issues are likely to have substantial effects in the future. In recent years, the largest corporations have come under attack for their inability to keep pace with competition, including foreign competition. The decentralized structure that Chandler identified as a key to their success is now cited as a source of costly sloth. In many cases, middle managers have been discharged in efforts to improve short-term financial performance. Does this trend represent a short-sighted fad, like the conglomerates of the 1960s, or a reversal of the managerial revolution, as popular writers have suggested? 29 If they are right, when did the process begin and what effects is it likely to have on business and business history writing?

These speculations should not obscure the fact that big business and corporate organization, top-down histories that emphasize organization building and technological creativity, dominate Western business history and will likely dominate it for many years. Though political, factors will receive more attention and transnational operations and comparisons of business activities in different countries will become more popular, the large corporation remains the overriding concern of Western business history. The process that Chandler initiated in the 1950s has transcended the milieu that originally encouraged it and has had a pervasive impact in the United States, Europe, and Japan. It should be the starting point of scholarly efforts to make sense of the role of the firm and the business community in China.


Notes
1.
See Peter Novick, That Noble Dream: The "Objectively Question" and the American Historical Profession ( New York: Cambridge University Press, 1988).
2.
Gras's approach was partly utilitarian: to provide case studies used in his business history course, a practice that continues to the present.
3.
Louis Galambos, American Business History (Washington: American Historical Association, 1967), pp. 1-4. Most of these works appeared in the Harvard Studies in Business History, which Gras edited.
4.
N. S.B. Gras, Business and Capitalism: Introduction to Business History ( New York: F.S. Crofts, 1939).
5.
See, for example, Walter B. Rideout, The Radical Novel in the United States, 1900-1954 ( Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1954).
6.
See, for example, Peter D'A Jones, ed., The Robber Barons Revisited ( Boston: Heath, 1968).

-163-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Chinese Business History: Interpretive Trends and Priorities for the Future
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 192

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?