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Week 4 Lecture Notes

History And Economics Notes > Chinese Economic History Since 1850 Notes

This is an extract of our Week 4 Lecture Notes document, which we sell as part of our Chinese Economic History Since 1850 Notes collection written by the top tier of London School Of Economics And Political Science students.

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EH207: Topic 4: Agricultural and Industrial Developments

Topic 4: Agricultural and Industrial Developments Introduction

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Few historians agree that there was an economic take-off at the aggregate level pre-Communist era Some however, argue that some modern sectors did experience some form of high growth around the turn of the 20th century and particularly at the beginning of WWI Production of cotton is a good indicator of labour-intensive industrialization o A slight increase in output is seen around 1900 (doubling from 100,000 bales to more than 200,000 in 2 or 3 years o There was a marked increase around 1922 following WWI (growing from 600,000 bales to over 2,500,000 before WWII o During WWII however, production fell dramatically with decreased demand to a low of 500,000 in 1946 o Yan Se found import substitution was growing following the start of WWI Other evidence of a surge around 1900: o Railway mileage from 10km in 1890 to 9,854 in 1913
? Against Japan from 2,349 to 10,570
? India 26,400 to 55,822 However, growth was limited because modern manufacturing output accounted for only 24% of total manufacturing o 3% of total GNP o Was a regional phenomenon

Pessimist View

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Modern industry and foreign exports helped destroy traditional agriculture and handicraft o Leading to decline in living standards Supported Malthusian view of "involution" o i.e. peasants forced to engage in low value-added handicrafts in order to make a living due to falling land-labour ratio

Optimist View

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Trade and opening-up Led to increased commercialization Reallocation of resources Regional specialization Rise in overall living standards

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