Download Civilization and Capitalism, 15th-18th Century, Volume III: by Fernand Braudel PDF

By Fernand Braudel

The concluding quantity of the trilogy charts the expansion of the area economic system from the 15th to the eighteenth century targeting the human job that underlies the enterprise of lifestyles - the bustle of the industry, the good manipulators of capital, the labour of the slave, the peasant and manufacturing unit staff, the models of the wealthy and the increase of the nice monetary centres of Genoa, Venice, Amsterdam and London.

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Extra resources for Civilization and Capitalism, 15th-18th Century, Volume III: The Perspective of the World

Example text

When Amsterdam replaced Antwerp, when London took over from Amsterdam, or when in about 1929, New York overtook London, it always meant a massive historical shift of forces , revealing the precariousness of the previous equilibrium and the strengths of the one which was replacing it. The whole circle of the world-economy was affected by such changes and the repercussions were never exclusively economic, as the reader will probably already suspect. When in 142 1 the Ming rulers of China changed their capital city leaving Nanking, and moving to Peking, in order to face the dangers of the Manchu and Mongol frontier - the massive world-economy of China swung round for good, turning its back on a form of economic activity based on ease of access to sea­ borne trade.

China was always extending her frontiers and trespassing on to the 'barbaric' lands as the Chinese texts call them - for the Chinese view of these peoples was the same as that of the classical Greeks of A 'raw barbarian' : Chinese drawing representing a half-naked Cambodian holding a seashell. Engraving from the Che Kong Tu. ) non-Greek-speaking populations : the inhabitants of Vietnam and the East Indies were 'barbarians' . In Vietnam however, the Chinese made a distinction between those barbarians who had been touched by Chinese civilization and those who had not.

Discoursing on what might have happened is frivolous . The only thing of which we can be sure is that if Lisbon, encouraged by the presence of the king of Spain, had triumphed, there would have been no Amsterdam, or at any rate not so soon. For there is only room for one centre at a time in a world-economy. The success of one sooner or later means the eclipse of another. During the reign of Augustus, in the Roman Mediterranean, Alexandria challenged Rome, which emerged triumphant. In the Middle Ages, in the race to capture the exploitable riches of the East, either Genoa or Venice had to come out on top .

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