Lecture Notes 12 Continuity and the 1950s

Lecture Notes 12 Continuity and the 1950s - Lecture Notes...

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Lecture Notes 11 Continuity and the 1950s This class is a transition from late imperial to People’s Republic of China. We first conclude the late imperial part, then we will talk about how the idea and practice of a state planned industrial development became a continuity between the Nationalist government and the Communist regime. In the first part of this course, we examine several different approaches to the late imperial China, its dynamism and it limits. The reason to examine its internal limit to further growth or development is that we want to know what went wrong in the first half of the nineteenth century. The government had little economic policies to relieve the deflation caused the massive silver outflows is thus one example of the limit or weak point in late imperial China. We may ask why did the deflation caused by silver outflows only occurred between 1820s and 1840s. Why did it not continue to affect the Chinese economy in the second half of the nineteenth century? Two major reasons. The first one is the expansion of domestic opium after the 1860s. Domestic opium was less strong and cheaper and therefore substituted the imported opium from India. The other one was more important. Due to technological progress, the output of silver in the world rose rapidly after the 1870s. Bu t many western countries followed Britain to move on to gold standard, which was to use gold as the standard currency in the 1870s. Silver became less valuable in the global market and thus flew into East Asia where silver was used as the standard currency, particularly China. The opening of more treaty ports cities in China also stimulated China’s exports to western countries, even though this opening was imposed on China by forces. When did the Chinese government realize the importance of minting its own silver currencies, instead of relying upon Mexican silver dollars from abroad? Quite late, around 1888-1890. The Qing government finally decided to imported machines to produce China’s own silver currencies. Of course, it takes time to unified domestic currency because the government needed to exchange various silver used in the markets with the newly minted Chinese silver currency. This process was actually disrupted by wars with Japan in 1895 and collapse of Qing in 1911. It is until the 1950s that China unified its domestic currency. The issue of silver thus shows how closely the Chinese economy had been connected with the global market in both the 18 th and 19 th centuries. The examination of late imperial China provides us a perspective to view twentieth century China. Our starting point is that China by the Opium War in 1842 had already had the state and a market economy, ? 6 , the two fundamental concepts social science. Three different relationships between the state and market economy: 1. The Libertarian system: or a minimal state The state only protected private property rights and does not intervene in the market economy. This state is often called
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This note was uploaded on 12/28/2010 for the course SOCIAL SCI SOSC119 taught by Professor Wenkaihe during the Fall '10 term at HKUST.

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Lecture Notes 12 Continuity and the 1950s - Lecture Notes...

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