US_Economic_History_Brian_Cabrera - Cabrera Brian Cabrera...

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Cabrera Brian Cabrera Midterm Paper Assignment Thursday October 27 th , 2011 1. Consider the Rostow/North/Martin/Towne & Rasmussen/David controversy concerning the trajectory of growth in early America from Ch . 1, p . 6-14 . “Obviously the pattern of economic growth must have changed sometime between the Revolution and the Civil War . The question is when . Opinions have differed wildly” (Atack, 6) . This exploration will focus on the economic growth in the early Antebellum Period and the various beliefs for the causation of the growth particularly in the time period between the Revolution and the Civil War . Unfortunately, the time period that the growth took place varies along with each economist . One of the main concerns that will be addressed is what provokes controversy in the first place . Another is the differing interpretations of American economic growth at this time and the most probable trajectory . The strengths, weaknesses, similarities, and differences of notable points of view will be highlighted . Closure will be brought through a thorough explanation of the Ante-bellum period and a potential answer to its controversy . “One the eve of the Revolution America was experiencing rapid extensive growth thanks in large part to the impetus supplied by a fast-growing population and virtually limitless land” (Atack, 6) . Economic growth appears to have first accelerated and become self-sustaining in the United States . This growth spread from the east to other parts of the country . The beginning stage of growth in America is known for great production and high manufacturing growth rates . “Kuznet’s radical speculation that per capita income might actually have risen during the period”
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Cabrera (Atack, 8) . American economy experienced a success due to a boom in world trade until an embargo was placed in 1807 . The controversy lies in the viewpoints several economists had for American economic growth between 1776 and 1840, before and after the embargo placed by President Jefferson . For the most part, economists (North, Martin, David, and Rostow) agree that the trade boom before the embargo increased GDP per capita in America . Towne & Rasmussen believe that GDP per capita actually decreased between 1775 and 1840, describing the time “as one of no overall progress” (Atack, 8) . The Antebellum is a period of time before the Civil War . It is a time of notable and historical changes that took place in early America . During this time, America was transformed from a nation of farmers into one of skilled laborers (Hummel, 244) . As the North and the (agricultural) South grew further apart, several observations could be made in regards to American economic growth during this time . The most important and well known advance in transportation in the antebellum period
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This note was uploaded on 11/06/2011 for the course ECON ECON-UA.20 taught by Professor Taiyoung-taft during the Fall '11 term at NYU.

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US_Economic_History_Brian_Cabrera - Cabrera Brian Cabrera...

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