Economic Opinion and Policy in Ceylon

Economic Opinion and Policy in Ceylon

Economic Opinion and Policy in Ceylon

Economic Opinion and Policy in Ceylon

Excerpt

During 1955-56 I spent an academic year (June-April) as Fulbright Lecturer in Economics at the University of Ceylon, located in the Kandyan hill country about 70 miles or three automobile-hours northeast of Colombo. Discussions and reading aroused my interest in Ceylonese economic opinion and policy, especially with respect to economic nationalism, the economic role of the state, and economic development. In the fall of 1956 Professor R. Taylor Cole of the Commonwealth-Studies Center at Duke University kindly invited me to give a lecture on "Nationalist Sentiment and Economic Opinion and Policy in Ceylon" and to submit the longer manuscript, which I had begun, to his committee.

This book is in no sense an exhaustive study of Ceylonese opinion and policy. It does not attempt to reproduce or rival such a volume as the International Bank Mission's Economic Development of Ceylon or the Ceylon Planning Secretariat's Six-Year Programme of Investment. Its coverage is limited, since it says little about such matters as monetary policy, labor legislation, taxes, and a host of other economic questions. Moreover, with respect to the topics chosen, what I have chiefly attempted to present is a summary and general interpretation, rather than a detailed analysis of the theoretical fine points involved and the probable results of actual and proposed policies. Chapter VI gives only a very sketchy discussion of probable effects upon incomes. Perhaps a more descriptive title would be "A Partial History of Nationalist Economics, Economic Ideology, and Development Policy in Ceylon, 1916-1956, with Interpretations and Reflections by the Author. . . . . . ."

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