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China and Capitalism

A History of Business Enterprise in Modern China

David Faure

Publication Year: 2006

This book describes China’s encounter with capitalism from the sixteenth century to the twentieth century. It poses poignant questions in simple language, guides the reader through a complex literature and presents a unique point of view.

Published by: Hong Kong University Press, HKU


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pp. v

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pp. vii

The substance of this book came from lectures I gave over the years in my own classes and at conferences. Among the many people to thank, therefore, are my students in the Economic History of Modern China course which I gave in the 1980s, who were much confused...

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-9

Towards the end of 1978 when the Chinese leadership decided to re-open the country to foreign trade and investment, the implications of the policy turn-around were neither as clearly set out nor necessarily as destined to succeed as it is sometimes now thought. Yet...

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2. The Sprouts of Capitalism

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pp. 11-25

Every now and then, it becomes an issue among historians what endemic features in Chinese society had held back the country’s economic development in the nineteenth century. In the latest round, they have been driven to focus their minds, by Andre Gunther...

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3. Why Did the Chinese Economy Lag Behind?

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pp. 27-44

The Chinese economy is said to have lagged behind in the nineteenth century for many reasons, not all of which are justified. Until the newspapers of Shanghai reported them in detail, inland famines were distant affairs for the coastal observer in China. Until then, Malthus...

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4. Company Law and the Emergence of the Modern Firm

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pp. 45-64

The modern firm came about in China via one of three routes: it was sometimes the result of the privatization of central government enterprises; it was sometimes built upon the family firm; and in a few cases, it came about as an exertion of coordinated regional...

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5. The Responsibility System and Enterprise Reform

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pp. 65-92

Economic growth from the 1870s continued until the early 1930s. By then, the World Depression caught up with China; production slumped and the monetary system came under attack. Had this book been concerned with the economic record rather than the narrower...

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6. Conclusion

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pp. 93-98

This broad sweep of the business history of China highlights the following aspects of traditional Chinese business institutions...


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pp. 99-119

A Note on Further Reading for the Non-Chinese Reader

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pp. 121-124


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pp. 125-127

E-ISBN-13: 9789882203839
Print-ISBN-13: 9789622097834

Page Count: 136
Publication Year: 2006