Japan, China, and the Growth of the Asian International Economy, 1850-1949 - Vol. 1

Japan, China, and the Growth of the Asian International Economy, 1850-1949 - Vol. 1

Japan, China, and the Growth of the Asian International Economy, 1850-1949 - Vol. 1

Japan, China, and the Growth of the Asian International Economy, 1850-1949 - Vol. 1

Synopsis

Modern Asian economic history has often been written in terms of Western impact and Asia's response to it. This volume argues that the growth of intra-regional trade, migration, and capital and money flows was a crucial factor that determined the course of East Asian economic development.

Excerpt

Modern Asian economic history in the second half of the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth century has traditionally been written in terms of the Western impact on Asia and Asia's response to it; the history of international contacts between Asian countries has not been considered as fundamental to the understanding of the region's economic modernization. Efforts have been made to correct this tendency over the last twenty years, especially with regard to East Asia, and we now have a stream of research, which has interpreted the history of intraregional trade, migration, and capital and money flows as factors that determined the course of East Asian economic development. Works that have been carried out along these lines have already been introduced to the English-language literature to some extent. (Many authors in Latham and Kawakatsu (1994) and Sugiyama and Grove (2001) share this interest. See also works cited in this chapter.) Meanwhile, case studies that have been accumulated in Japanese scholarship confirm that trade links with Asia, with strong elements of intra-Asian competition, were indeed vital to Japanese industrialization. This volume substantiates these claims by adding further evidence to them and bringing in the Chinese dimension more fully than has been possible hitherto.

It should be acknowledged that, in accounting for the growth of East Asian international economic relations, the economic history of the Japanese colonial empire (especially Korea and Taiwan), as well as her informal empire (especially Manchuria), should occupy a central place in the analysis, especially with regard to the interwar period. However, they are relatively well covered in the English-language literature (Myers and Peattie 1984 ; Duus, Myers, and Peattie 1989 , 1996), while Japanese international economic relations outside them have received less attention. Nor have Japanese-language sources been fully utilized for the discussion of Asian international economic history as a whole. We therefore opted to concentrate on themes dealing with interactions outside

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