The Origin of Modern Capitalism and Eastern Asia

The Origin of Modern Capitalism and Eastern Asia

The Origin of Modern Capitalism and Eastern Asia

The Origin of Modern Capitalism and Eastern Asia

Excerpt

Have had the pleasure of being editorially concerned in the preparation of this bold and interesting sociological thesis for publication by the Hong Kong University Press.

I am sure that this work will be found useful and stimulating by all who are concerned with the rapid contemporary advance of thought and research in the domain of sociology, in such respects especially as the historical understanding and present-day projection of the processes of social, economic and political developments; and particularly by those who are concerned with one of the most significant and portentous developments of our epoch-- the advance of the major Far Eastern countries into the stage of industrialism.

The author's approach, method and purposes are sufficiently explained in his own Preface and First Chapter, and need no prior introduction from me.

In the body of the work, seven general criteria, or key 'foci', taken as determinants of the emergence of modern industrial capitalism, are stated and examined in Chapters III to IX. Each criterion is analysed in a separate chapter, in respective sections dealing with its various aspects and significances; the author adduces a wealth of examples and illustrations, and traces (so to speak) the characteristic parameters involved, from the cases of the two great Far Eastern countries and societies--China and Japan. China and Japan are taken in juxtaposition, against this background, for a comparative study, the aim of which is to shed light on the great question, 'Why did Japan embark (with success) on the course of capitalism, as the path of industrialization, while China did not?'--and, in so doing, to clarify more generally our understanding of the nature of modern capitalism or industrialism, and the conditions for its emergence.

Each of these expository chapters, and of the sub-sections within them, thus opens with a statement of postulated principles, followed by explanations and illustrations of their application first to the case of China and then to that of Japan, followed again by a brief statement of conclusions.

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