The East in the West

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 21, 1996 - Business & Economics - 295 pages
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The East in the West reassesses Western views of Asia. Traditionally many European historians and theorists have seen the societies of the East as 'static' or 'backward'. Jack Goody challenges these assumptions, beginning with the notion of a special Western rationality which enabled 'us' and not 'them' to modernise. He then turns to book-keeping, which several social and economic historians have seen as intrinsic to capitalism, arguing that there was in fact little difference between East and West in terms of mercantile activity. Other factors said to inhibit the East's development, such as the family and forms of labour, have also been greatly exaggerated. This Eurocentrism both fails to explain the current achievements of the East, and misunderstands Western history. The East in the West starts to redress the balance, and so marks a fundamental shift in our view of Western and Eastern history and society.
  

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Contents

Rationality in review
11
Rationality and ragioneria the keeping of books and the economic miracle
49
Indian trade and economy in the medieval and early colonial periods
82
The growth of Indian commerce and industry
113
Family and business in the East
138
From collective to individual? The historiography of the family in the West
162
Labour production and communication
205
Revaluations
226
early links between East and West
250
Bibliography
263
Index
285
Copyright

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Page 1 - plant colonies in their ports, and give laws to their natural princes? The same wind that carries them back would bring us thither.' 'They are more powerful, sir, than we', answered Imlac, 'because they are wiser; knowledge will always predominate over ignorance, as man governs the other animals.
Page 1 - 1 This royal throne of kings, this scepter'd isle, This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, This other Eden, demi-paradise . . . (Richard II,
Page 1 - natives of our own kingdom and those that surround us, they appeared almost another order of beings. In their countries it is difficult to wish for anything that may not be obtained: a thousand arts, of which we never heard, are continually labouring for their convenience and pleasure; and whatever their own climate
Page 1 - I conversed with great numbers of the northern and western nations of Europe; the nations which are now in possession of all power and all knowledge, whose armies are irresistible, and whose fleets command the remotest parts of the globe. When I compared these men with
Page 1 - why their knowledge is more than ours, I know not what reason can be given but the unsearchable will of the Supreme Being.

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About the author (1996)

Jack Goody is Emeritus Professor of Social Anthropology in the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of St John's College. Recently knighted by Her Majesty The Queen for services to anthropology, Professor Goody has researched and taught all over the world, is a Fellow of the British Academy and in 1980 was made a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2004 he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and he was elected Commandeur des Arts et Lettres in 2006.

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