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Civilization and Capitalism, 15th-18th Century
Fernand Braudel, Civilization and Capitalism, 15th-18th Century, in 3 volumes, New York: Harper and Row, 1981-84, original editions in French, 1979.
Review Essay by Alan Heston, Departments of Economics and South Asia Regional Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
Fernand Braudel's Civilization and Capitalism
Fernand Braudel is associated with the influential Annales School (La nouvelle histoire) that advocated a major break from the dominant narrative paradigm of the early twentieth century embracing an approach to history integrating the social sciences with a problem-focused history. Braudel is uniformly praised as one of the most influential historians of the twentieth century, but a hard act to follow. Braudel immersed himself into masses of materials and emerged with plausible broad-brush stories to tell, teaching others how to replicate this approach is problematic. While the Annales School has made only a small dent in the economic history curriculum in the United States, it has had much more influence on social history worldwide and on economic history in France, Europe and the rest of the world. Rondo Cameron (1989, p. 406) in speaking of Civilization and Capitalism says, "it contains a wealth of factual information, mostly correct, but the brilliance of its author's rather idiosyncratic interpretation has been exaggerated by the popular press." Whether one buys the whole quotation, one can certainly agree with Cameron that Braudel builds very idiosyncratic interpretations based upon a wealth of information, often very imaginatively used.
This essay will not pretend to cover the three volumes of Civilization and Capitalism but rather touch on some broad themes that have had influence on our understanding of world economic history. These themes include Braudel's emphasis on the economic condition of every-man, on a global approach to economic and social history, and on the process of capitalism and its geographical spread. This essay will begin with Braudel's uses of capitalism, and then take up themes from the volumes of Civilization and Capitalism.
Before dealing with capitalism, some background on Braudel's career is needed. Many consider The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II (1966 English translation) published in France in 1949 as his defining work. Braudel began this research in 1923 at age twenty-one and it was envisaged as his doctoral dissertation and was to concentrate on the policies of Philip II in the form of a conventional diplomatic history. Braudel taught secondary school in Algeria from 1923 to 1932 and then lived in Brazil where he taught at the University of Sao Paulo from 1935 to 1937. During this period he kept up with developments in Paris including establishment of Annales in 1929 by Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre. The long gestation period of this impressive work undoubtedly had much to do with how different was the final product from the original design. Braudel says that he began to see the sense of writing a history of the Mediterranean world in discussions with Febvre circa 1927 but that he did not find models upon which to build. And then in 1934 he began to find quantitative data on ship arrivals and departures, cargoes, prices and other economic data that he felt would be the bricks and mortar of an economic and social history of the Mediterranean. By 1939 he had an outline of what he wished to say, but he was captured by the Germans in 1940 and was imprisoned for the next five years where amazingly he wrote the first draft of The Mediterranean totally from memory. The Mediterranean focuses on the history of one world region in a wide-ranging intellectual breakthrough, involving the geographic setting, transport and communications, urban and hinterland developments, trade, empires and more political themes.
In 1950 his mentor, Lucien Febvre, asked Braudel, who was then teaching at the College of Paris, to contribute a volume to a series on world history. This series was to feature a volume on "Western Thought and Belief, 1400-1800," that Febvre would prepare while Braudel would focus on the development of capitalism over the same period. Febvre died before he could complete his volume. Braudel succeeded Febvre in 1956 at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes where he headed the Sixth Section, history. Braudel took responsibility for preparation of what became a three-volume series and was sole editor of the Annales during its most influential period. Braudel published the first volume of Civilization and Capitalism in 1967, and it was translated as Capitalism and Material Life, 1400-1800 in 1973. Volume II, Les Jeux de l"Echange and volume III, Le Temps du Monde, were published in France in 1979; volume II was translated and published as The Wheels of Commerce in 1982 and volume III as The Perspective of the World in 1984, a year before his death. (When the three-volume set was prepared, Volume I, Les Structures du Quotidien: Le Possible et L'Impossible, was a substantially rewritten version of the 1967 edition and was published in France in 1979. The English translation, The Structures of Everyday Life: The Limits of the Possible, was published in 1981. That translation followed the form of the original translation, Capitalism and Material Life, 1400 - 1800, incorporating new materials and changes. In the text, Volume I will be referred to as Capitalism and Material Life.)
A number of centers that focus on aspects of his work were begun during Braudel's lifetime. Immanuel Wallerstein was instrumental in establishing the Fernand Braudel Center at Binghamton University (SUNY) in 1976. Their journal, Review, begun in 1977, explores a variety of issues relating to the evolution of capitalism, and the study of world systems, about which more below. The Fernand Braudel Institute in Sao Paulo is a think tank that has a strong social dimension to its studies. The economic history emerging from these centers is likely to emphasize the impact of capitalism on the social structures of society and the dependencies involved in the evolution of a worldwide economy over the past five hundred years.
Braudel emphasizes that capitalism is something different from the market economy, a distinction that should be kept in mind in understanding Civilization and Capitalism. In lectures in 1976, he said, "...despite what is usually said, capitalism does not overlay the entire economy and all of working society: it never encompasses both of them within one perfect system all its own. The triptych I have described--material life, the market economy, and the capitalist economy--is still an amazingly valid explanation, even though capitalism today has expanded in scope." (-Afterthoughts on Material Civilization and Capitalism, p. 112) Whether or not one agrees with Braudel, this is his explanation of the order of the three volumes moving from the lower level of the daily material life of everyman to the market economy to the highest level of capitalism. It is a structure of thinking that is rather alien to trends in economic research that seek to explain the behavior of households, markets and business firms using similar economic models, a point discussed further below.
What is capitalism? For Wallerstein capitalism is a system built upon the international division of labor in which the core of the resulting world system prospers, if not at the expense of the others, at least relative to others. A familiar enough theme from the recent Seattle World Trade Organization protests. While Wallerstein took inspiration from Braudel, this is not what Braudel means by capitalism. Braudel viewed the capitalist economy as in the above paragraph, namely as something above everyday material life and the operation of markets. Capitalism takes advantage of high profit opportunities generated by linking markets into a world economy. Braudel distinguishes between the world economy and a world economy, a distinction that is not felicitous, but as one searches for alternatives, such as "regional economy" for a "world economy," it seems better to stay with his language.
For Braudel a world economy features a core capitalist city whose commercial and financial spread may be well beyond national political boundaries. However, for Braudel there may be several world economies operating at the same time, and for each there will be a dominant core city. Capitalism may utilize an international or larger spatial division of labor but the hegemony of any particular core city for a world economy will wax and wane over time. Further, Braudel believes there have been capitalist worlds from the Italian city states or earlier, whereas Wallerstein's analysis relies more on a Marxian progression from feudalism to capitalism. Further, Wallerstein treats the political empires like Rome, the Ottomans or the Mughals as non-capitalist systems while Braudel would be inclined to see in them some capitalistic features. He says, "...I am personally inclined to think that even under the constraints of an oppressive empire with little concern for the particular interests of its different possessions, a world-economy could, even if rudely handled and closely watched, still survive and organize itself, extending significantly beyond the imperial frontiers; the Romans traded in the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, the Armenian merchants of Julfa, the suburb of Isfahan, spread over almost the entire world; the Indian Banyans went as far as Moscow; Chinese merchants frequented all the ports of the East Indies; Muscovy established its ascendancy over the mighty periphery of Siberia in record time" (Perspective of the World, p. 55). Braudel's position would clearly find support in Mancur Olson's work.
One further point on capitalism concerns its origins. Wallerstein seeks the origins of the capitalist world system in the feudal breakdown of the agrarian society of Northern Europe in the sixteenth century. Braudel is less concerned with questions of origins, but would certainly place a European world economy much earlier, perhaps in fourteenth-century Italy. Braudel is equally uncomfortable with Max Weber and any attempt to tie capitalism to the Protestant reformation (see Stanley Engerman's essay in this project). Again, his first line of attack would be to point to all of the developments in the Italian city states that long pre-dated Luther and Calvin.
One point deserves further mention, namely the emphasis that Braudel gives to the ebb and flow of world economies over time and space. There is an element of Joseph Schumpeter's creative destruction in Braudel's view of the process but with a spatial spin. Schumpeter saw new innovations involving new entrepreneurs replacing older businesses along with their technologies and labor force. For Braudel the slowly shifting boundaries of world economies have two important implications. First, some areas never become involved with a world economy and their economic level remains very low. And second, some areas that were in a world economy, and were perhaps a core city, lose their place as boundaries of world economies change over time.
2. Capitalism and Material Life
Braudel and the Annales School represented a reaction to traditional narrative history with its emphasis on major actors, usually political or economic elites. More problem-oriented social and economic history has been mainstream for such a long period that present-day readers are unlikely to see anything revolutionary in Braudel's work. However, in Volume I the chapter headings at that time were themselves a statement, beginning at the lowest level of economic and social organization.
Braudel begins Volume I of Civilization and Capitalism with a discussion of world population during the fifteenth to nineteenth centuries, including an evaluation of the reliability of the numbers and a description of the balance of peoples around the world. Beginning his study with counting all of humanity, Braudel starts off with a global view, involving the rich and the poor, and all regions of the world. He takes on social classifications, like civilized and barbaric, providing an overview of global social divisions. Public health receives major emphasis throughout but certainly the importance of the education of mothers on the health of children does not find its way into Braudel's treatment. It is a man's world and although his wife, Paule, was an important contributor to his research, one has to look hard in Braudel for that half of humanity.
Braudel follows population in Capitalism and Material Life with chapters on the major categories of consumer expenditure, bread and cereals, other foods and drink, and clothing and housing. These chapters, enriched with appropriate illustrations, include the diets of the poor, food fashions of the rich, the lack of furnishings of the homes of the poor and middle classes, and the increasingly elaborate interiors of the more affluent. The treatment of fashion and necessity in clothing is wide ranging. While much of this is based on the research of others, it is an extraordinary synthesis of materials from many sources and it is good reading.
The focus on everyday life in Capitalism and Material Life represents a concern shaping many areas of study after 1950, a movement from the study of elites to those of more ordinary people. This entered archaeology, as excavations moved from the palaces and temples to remains of foods, bones, and the dwellings of the poor, or lack thereof. Braudel's emphasis thus fit very well into much Marxian history and with a view that capitalism grew at the expense of the lower classes. The following quotation referring to Naples is in his chapter Towns and Cities, and is from one of several sketches of cities of the era. It gives the tone of Braudel's treatment of income inequality.
"Both sordid and beautiful, abjectly poor and very rich, certainly gay and lively, Naples counted 400,000, probably 500,000 inhabitants on the eve of the French Revolution. It was the fourth town in Europe, coming equal with Madrid after London, Paris and Istanbul. A major breakthrough after 1695 extended it in the direction of Borgo de Chiaja, facing the second bay of Naples (the first being Marinella.) Only the rich benefited, as authorization to build outside the walls, granted in 1717, almost exclusively concerned them. As for the poor, their district stretched out from the vast Largo del Castello, where burlesque quarrels over the free distribution of victuals took place, to the Mercato, their fief, facing the Paludi plain that began outside the ramparts. They were so crowded that their life encroached and overflowed on to the streets. · These ragged poor numbered at the lowest estimate 100,000 people at the end of the century" (Volume I, p. 532).
Here in the midst of a description of impoverishment in Naples we also have imbedded an estimate of the homeless as 20 to 25 percent of society, a typical quantitative illustration that Braudel uses to great effect. He also tells us that the rich have the political power to live in more desirable locations, nothing new there. It is not surprising that Marxist historians would find much to like in Braudel, but there is very little ideological in his writings.
In fact, Braudel is much more interested in putting the everyday life of all peoples in perspective by comparisons of 1400 to 1800 and to contemporary levels of living. Braudel admired Simon Kuznets' work on national income but does not appear familiar with concepts like urban versus rural versus national growth rates, and his career predates the development of poverty weighted growth rates. But one senses from his discussions of material life that Braudel would have found these comfortable constructs with which to work. He also suggests that he would have liked to use cliometrics in the analysis of his period but that there were not adequate data. However, Braudel would have probably wanted to build up social and national accounts rather than deal with behavioral models.
3. The Wheels of Commerce
It is curious that Volume I devotes chapters to Money and Towns and Cities, which seem much more the subjects of Volume II, The Wheels of Commerce. However, Braudel looks at money as an indicator of the degree of monetization of societies and the complexity of their economies. And as we have noted, the increase in towns and cities during the 1400-1800 period meant an increasing number of poor making their material life in urban areas. On the other hand, this curious treatment may only reflect the evolution of Civilization and Capitalism, in which Capitalism and Material Life was fairly self contained and appeared thirteen years earlier than the remaining volumes.
Wheels of Commerce moves from markets to capitalism and society. Although Braudel does not use the language, he is concerned with the development of institutions, ideology and social norms. He offers a justification for employing the term capitalism, noting that it was not a term used by Marx, only his followers. Capitalism for Braudel involves not only the use of capital but also its position at the apex of material life. As discussed, it is this aspect of Braudel that has had a large influence on those associating the expansion of capitalism and world systems as necessarily intertwined. The first chapter of Wheels of Commerce is called the Instruments of Exchange, by which Braudel means the types of markets in which exchange took place; it is followed by a chapter on Markets and the Economy. The two may only be separate because together they are the length of an average book. Braudel deals with local commodity markets serving surrounding villages and market towns serving their hinterland, as well as wholesale and financial markets. Markets for financial instruments including bourses and exchanges, as well as credit institutions like banks, are also discussed. Bourses, after the Hotel des Bourses in Bruges where early meetings of merchants took place, also dealt in wholesale commodity trade, especially for articles like pepper, cotton, tea and the like. For Europe the 1400-1800 period sees the development of exchanges in Amsterdam and London that while subject to bubbles, also provided a basis for financial intermediation for even small investors.
In treating the development of markets Braudel gives emphasis to the geography of markets, and his treatment is often imaginative, though not terribly systematic. He analyzes the frequency and density of fairs and markets in England and France. He gives more cursory treatments of other parts of the world, though both India and China receive their fair due. G. William Skinner's treatment of Chinese market towns and cities is discussed in terms of the hexagons of Walter Chrystaller and August Losch. Here Braudel argues that the size of the hexagon embracing different size market towns varies inversely with the density of population (II, pp.118-19). He then applies this to puzzles in French history about the varying boundaries of pays, which he argues may well have been due to changing population densities over time--a rather nice cross-section, time-series application.
Braudel asks questions about markets that are fundamental but often not treated systematically. When do wholesale markets emerge? What leads to the establishment of year-round shops versus occasional markets and fairs? Why did the number of shops proliferate during the 1400-1800 period? When are peddlers really agents of wholesalers and when are they petty traders? Braudel concludes that the expansion of markets was stronger in England than in France, though he does not probe further into why this may have been so. And he argues in terms of his view of hierarchy, that the development of capitalism was interdependent with the expansion of exchange. He also notes that France and particularly China had administrations that constrained the expansion in markets and hence the amount of capitalistic development.
How do markets relate to each other? One way they are integrated is through the activities of the same firm, most typically in this period, an extended family firm. Braudel examines these connections mainly in Europe. The extended family firm was a common practice of merchants from India, China and the Middle East, some of which are discussed by Braudel. While he recognizes the importance of business families in extending the boundaries of any world economy, this also poses a puzzle in some of the diasporas that Philip Curtin has described so well.
For example, in Asia, which in 1400 contained more than half of world population, income and wealth, there was an established pattern of trade prior to European incursions involving intersections of an East Asian world economy that was linked to an Indian world economy stretching from Malacca in the Malaysian Peninsula to Calicut and Cambay in Western India. This in turn joined with what Braudel terms an Islamic world economy extending from the East Coast of Africa through the Arabian Peninsula, Egypt, Turkey and Persia. However, when Vasco da Gama arrived in Calicut in 1498, it was not the core city of an Indian world economy, nor is it obvious that there was such a core city. Vijayanagar was a major South Indian empire at this time but its ability to expand northward was constrained by the presence of the five hostile Bahami kingdoms. The Mughal empire only emerges after 1526. Calicut is itself ruled by the Zamorin, a Hindu ruler whose state was physically quite small, and who did not have territorial ambitions. As Braudel notes, the proportion of Arabs, Indian Muslims, Hindus, and Chinese among the actual merchant groups and shippers varied over the centuries. Diasporas like Malacca and Calicut were home or branch office to Arabs, Armenians, Chinese, Hindus, Bohras, Khojas and similar Muslim groups, Jews, Malays and others. The activities of these traders seem to fit Braudel's model of high profit seekers linking smaller markets. However, the claim that these Asian world economies of the fifteenth and earlier centuries involved core cities seems strained. Even after the Mughal, Ming, Ottoman and Persian empires were established, it is problematic.
The remaining chapters of Wheels of Commerce deal with the development of capitalism and the role of the state in markets and in establishing monopolies including a lengthy treatment of the activities of the merchant trading monopolies in Africa, Asia and the Americas. Braudel's treatment of society is a wide-ranging social and political analysis including discussions of hierarchies, revolts and the state and social order. Braudel does not use the terminology, "social norms," but in a section "Civilizations do not always put up a fight" (II, p. 555) he certainly explores their importance. He says, "When Europe came to life again in the eleventh century, the market economy and monetary sophistication were 'scandalous' novelties. Civilization, standing for ancient tradition, was by definition hostile to innovation. So it said no to the market, no to profit making, no to capital. At best it was suspicious and reticent. Then as the years passed, the demands and pressures of everyday life became more urgent. European civilization was caught in a permanent conflict that was pulling it apart. So with a bad grace, it allowed change to force the gates. And the experience was not peculiar to the West."
4. The Perspective of the World
In his very ambitious last volume, Braudel deals with long cycles, the emergence of various world economies, historical problems in measuring GDP per person, the colonial economies and the industrial revolution. It is certainly successful in one of its aims, to treat the economic history of the 1400-1800 period as a story of the world, not simply Western Europe. There are rich discussions of Africa, the Americas, and Asia balancing well the perspective of the colonizer and the colonized. In his essay on Max Weber, Engerman (p. 5) places Weber and Braudel, along with David Landes, Joel Mokyr, Douglass North, Nathan Rosenberg and others as scholars dealing with the "perceived uniqueness of the Western European economy." Let me close this essay by arguing that while Braudel has a lot to say about developments in Western Europe, he did not see a simple explanation of the causes of growth in the West, nor did he think this was the most interesting question to explore.
The uniqueness of Western European experience has certainly been taken as the phenomenon to be explained by many economic historians. Writers like Weber not only looked at European evidence in the Protestant Reformation but also offered explanations of why the religions of other societies, such as India, were less conducive to growth. Braudel is not at home with Weber, nor does he seem to give great importance to institutions like private property, contract, and the like. In fact, he does not seem to accept even the premise that there is something unique to be explained about the development of capitalism in Europe.
It might be argued that this is because of Braudel's idiosyncratic view of capitalism. Let me again quote Braudel;
"Throughout this book, I have argued that capitalism has been potentially visible since the dawn of history, and that it has developed and perpetuated itself down the ages. (III, p. 620) ... It would however be a mistake to imagine capitalism as something that developed in a series of stages or leaps--from mercantile capitalism to industrial capitalism to finance capitalism, with some kind of regular progression from one phase to the next, with 'true' capitalism appearing only at the late stage when it took over production, and the only permissible term for the early period being mercantile capitalism or even 'pre-capitalism'. In fact as we have seen, the great 'merchants' of the past never specialized: they went in indiscriminately, simultaneously or successively, for trade, banking, finance, speculation on the Stock Exchange, 'industrial' production, whether under the putting-out system or more rarely in manufactories. The whole panoply of forms of capitalism--commercial, industrial, banking--was already employed in thirteenth century Florence, in seventeenth-century Amsterdam, in London before the eighteenth century"(III, p. 621).
Here Braudel strongly sees in his period and earlier the same business forms that exist today and to which others attribute the uniqueness of Western European experience.
However, the following quotation perhaps illustrates where Braudel imparts his own special view of capitalism. He says,
"The worst error of all is to suppose that capitalism is simply an 'economic system,' whereas in fact it lives off the social order, standing almost on a footing with the state, whether as adversary or accomplice: it is and always has been a massive force, filling the horizon. Capitalism also benefits from all the support that culture provides for the solidity of the social edifice, for culture--though unequally distributed and shot through with contradictory currents--does in the end contribute the best of itself to propping up the existing order. And lastly capitalism can count on the dominant classes who, when they defend it, are defending themselves.
Of the various social hierarchies--the hierarchies of wealth, of state power or of culture, that oppose yet support each other--which is the most important? The answer as we have already seen, is that it may depend on the time, the place and who is speaking" (III, p. 623).
Braudel has a number of elements of Schumpeter in his view of world economic history, in particular long cycles and creative destruction. One of his important insights shared by many others who stress uneven or unbalanced growth is that world economies have changing borders and that there are often areas not included in any world economy. Indian software programmers are writing for Oracle in Bangalore while other areas of India (and many other world areas) are as yet unaffected by the information technology revolution. Most large countries have special development programs for backward areas, of which many have had flourishing histories, such as natural resource-rich Bihar and Eastern Uttar Pradesh in India, the seat of the Mauryan Empire and the birthplace of the Buddha.
However, Braudel departs sharply from Schumpeter in how he views the capitalist entrepreneur. For Braudel the monopolistic character of capitalism is the key element of privilege and the link between the state and society. He says,
"The rise of capitalism in the nineteenth century has been described, even by Marx, even by Lenin, as eminently, indeed healthily competitive. Were such observers influenced by illusions, inherited assumptions, ancient errors of judgement? In the eighteenth century, compared to the unearned privileges of a 'leisured' aristocracy, the privileges of merchants may perhaps have looked like a fair reward for labour; in the nineteenth century, after the age of the big companies and their state monopolies (the Indies companies for instance) the mere freedom of trading may have seemed the equivalent of competition. And industrial production (which was however only one sector of capitalism) was still quite frequently handled by small firms which did indeed compete on the market and continue to do so today. Hence the classic image of the entrepreneur serving the public interest, which persisted throughout the nineteenth century, while the virtues of laissez-faire and free trade were everywhere celebrated. The extraordinary thing is that such images should still be with us today in the language spoken by politicians and journalists, in works of popularization and in the teaching of economics, when doubt long ago entered the minds of the specialists..."(III, pp. 628-9).
These closing quotations from Braudel restate his view that everyday material life and operation of markets proceed at one level while capitalism carries on at a higher level above the others. Further Braudel sees capitalism as closely related to the political elites of the world economy in which they are operating. While Braudel's view of the world economy is shared by many Marxist historians it is also consistent with the writers like John Kenneth Galbraith and Mancur Olsen, with whom I sense more affinity.
One cannot write an economic history of the world of the last five hundred years and not at least list Fernand Braudel in your bibliography. But how well does Braudel stand up today? My answer would be very well indeed at several levels. Landes (1998, xvii) introduces his recent book with an account of the inability of contemporary medicine in 1836 to save Nathan Rothschild, the richest person in the world at the time, from death by blood poisoning. Braudel put medical advances and public health practices up front in Capitalism and Material Life as critical to the improvements in economic well being of the world in the early modern period, clearly a theme shared with Landes and many others. He likewise saw the importance of historical demography to our understanding of development of the global economy.
Related to these demographic themes is Braudel's concern with how health and material well being were distributed. He saw the great inequalities generated in world economies, and thought it important to describe them. He documents inequalities in both the distribution of private and public goods and services and sees systems of privilege as part of past and present economies. And while he would have liked a more equitable world, this is not a major theme in Capitalism and Civilization. A major theme that has contemporary resonance is the uneven development of different geographic regions of the world, and the lack of convergence of world economies, and more particularly the persistence of regions that have never been part of a world economy, or were part of a world economy in the past, but not at present.
Braudel's distinction between markets and capitalism is probably least likely to make it into mainstream economic history, yet in many ways it also has a very contemporary ring as we move towards becoming one world economy. It is not hard to imagine Braudel finding analogies in this period for phenomena like "not in my backyard" or the internet. In today's world of mega-mergers that need support by one or more nation states, of Airbus-Boeing battles and of Microsoft anti-trust actions, the Braudel perspective of the world fits surprisingly well. The importance of being first when there are declining costs, learning by doing, or other scale factors that provide barriers to entry into markets are not foreign to the world that Braudel describes. Often, as in the case of the trading companies, monopoly was based upon government support as in the cable industry today, and much of the capitalism that Braudel describes is related to retaining government support or preventing government interference.
Braudel, Fernand. 1966 (English translation, 1972-73). The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II. New York: Harper and Row.
Braudel, Fernand. 1977. Afterthoughts on Material Civilization and Capitalism. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Cameron, Rondo. 1991. Economic History of the World. New York: Oxford University Press.
Curtin, Philip. 1984. Cross-Cultural Trade in World History. London: Cambridge University Press.
Galbraith, John Kenneth. 1967. The New Industrial State. Boston: Houghton-Mifflin.
Landes, David S. 1998. The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some Are So Rich and Some So Poor. New York: W.W. Norton.
Olson, Mancur. 2000. Power and Prosperity: Outgrowing Communist and Capitalist Dictatorships. New York: Basic Books.
Schumpeter, Joseph. 1942. Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy . New York: Harper and Brothers.