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The Wheels of Commerce: From the Industrial Revolution to Global Capitalism

History 3593 - Fall 2020

This course introduces the methods, issues, and debates that shape our understanding of economic change and development from the Industrial Revolution to the post-industrial age. Engaging economic theorists from Marx to Smith, to Weber and Wallerstein, this course problematizes the notion of rational economic actors and interrogates notions of free trade in an attempt to understand the impact of capitalism on the world. We start the course with a discussion of the "exceptionalism" of Great Britain as the first industrial nation and reconsider the impact of new trade, production, property and monetary/financial regimes that resulted in the so-called "Great Divergence" between China and the West. We then turn to the "late industrializers" of China, Japan, and Mexico in order to investigate the varieties of development, specifically focusing on monetary integration, legal integration and the global impact of the great depression. Continuing into the Bretton Woods Conference and the post-war international monetary systems, we bring the course to a close with the advent of the "post-industrial age." This course is designed both for students specializing in economic history and students in all disciplines interested in historical approaches to political/economic development.
Course Attributes: EN HBU HumBU BAAS HUMAS LCD

Section 01

The Wheels of Commerce: From the Industrial Revolution to Global Capitalism
INSTRUCTOR: Reynolds
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