Power and Plenty: Trade, War, and the World Economy in the Second Millennium (The Princeton Economic History of the Western World, 22): Ronald Findlay, Kevin H. O’Rourke

International trade has shaped the modern world, yet until now no single book has been available for both economists and general readers that traces the history of the international economy from its earliest beginnings to the present day. Power and Plenty fills this gap, providing the first full account of world trade and development over the course of the last millennium.

Ronald Findlay and Kevin O’Rourke examine the successive waves of globalization and “deglobalization” that have occurred during the past thousand years, looking closely at the technological and political causes behind these long-term trends. They show how the expansion and contraction of the world economy has been directly tied to the two-way interplay of trade and geopolitics, and how war and peace have been critical determinants of international trade over the very long run. The story they tell is sweeping in scope, one that links the emergence of the Western economies with economic and political developments throughout Eurasia centuries ago. Drawing extensively upon empirical evidence and informing their systematic analysis with insights from contemporary economic theory, Findlay and O’Rourke demonstrate the close interrelationships of trade and warfare, the mutual interdependence of the world’s different regions, and the crucial role these factors have played in explaining modern economic growth.

Power and Plenty is a must-read for anyone seeking to understand the origins of today’s international economy, the forces that continue to shape it, and the economic and political challenges confronting policymakers in the twenty-first century.

Review

“Aiming at nothing less than documenting the history of world trade over the last 1,000 years, Power and Plenty…appears to be required reading…for the purposes of better understanding how the world works.”—Andrew Leonard, Salon.com

Power and Plenty . . . with its depth and extensive coverage, makes an excellent reference work for the study world history and the history of world trade. It is a work of superb scholarship befitting the scholarly reputations of each of the co-authors, Findlay for his work in the theory of international trade and development and O’Rourke for his studies in economic history and globalization. This book will be widely read, cited, and discussed as a landmark volume on its subjects.”—Stanley Engerman, New Global Studies

“In this magnificently conceived and executed work, Findlay and O’Rourke set out the history of global trade and show how it has been influenced by economic development and politics over the last thousand years. The authors have an important story to tell and they tell it superbly. This is a work brimming with scholarship, deftly combining narrative history with accessible economic analysis. This is a goldmine of a book. Open it where you will, there are nuggets to be extracted. It will remain the standard work on the history of world trade and indeed the development of the world economy for many years to come.”—Frank Geary, Irish Times

“This is a well researched volume which is simply delightful to read. In most of the topics about which I have some knowledge, I found the analyses and the judgments offered by the authors both balanced and insightful. I expect this book will remain the standard text for many years to come.”—Sevket Pamuk, EH.Net

“[T]he best book of its sort since David Landes’ Wealth and Poverty of Nations.”—David Warsh, Economic Principals

“International trade has shaped the modern world, yet until now no single book has been available for both economists and general readers that traces the history of the international economy from its earliest beginnings to the present day. Power and Plenty fills this gap, providing the first full account of world trade and development over the course of the last millennium.” ― Wider Angle

“[A] splendidly ambitious new book…an excellent reference book for anyone wanting a better understanding of economic developments in the last millennium.” ― Economist

Power and Plenty is a wide-ranging survey, both of the facts and of the literature, not an essay organized around a single thesis. It takes on, and treats seriously, a ton of material. Bearing that in mind, it is…engaging…well written, spiced with nuggets of fascinating information and dry wit. [Findlay and
O’Rourke’s] economics is sophisticated and mainstream…but enriched with an unusual attention to noneconomic factors–or, as the authors put it, ‘a sustained emphasis on conflict, violence and geopolitics.'”—Clive Crook, Financial Times

“[T]his book is a masterful synthesis of economic analysis and historical narrative. It demands quite a lot of its readers, however, as its more than 600 pages are packed with facts, conclusions and implications for economic development, never hesitating to elaborate on the complexities of international trade relations during the last millennium.”—Erik Lindberg, Scandinavian Economic History Review

“Almost anyone researching an aspect of the history of international trade will find this an excellent and stimulating starting point and will be aided by an impressive bibliography that includes many older classics as well as recent additions to the literature.”—Simon Ville, International Journal of Maritime History

“Trade has been the economic foundation of international integration and globalization. But, as Findlay and O’Rourke show in this masterful, state-of-the-art historical survey, it has also been a very frequent cause of rivalry between nations and maritime conflict. No better book exists on the role that commerce has played in generating both the wealth of nations and the wars between them. The authors command the literature the way Victorian admirals ruled the waves.”―Niall Ferguson, Harvard University

“A work of extraordinary scope and ambition and a major achievement. Findlay and O’Rourke show how international trade opens an illuminating window onto fully a millennium of world economic history.”―Barry Eichengreen, University of California, Berkeley

The vision that emerges in this book is more powerful and encompassing than any previous study of world trade. It passes all the tests that an economic historian might require in terms of empirical evidence while also embodying a very clear view of the economics of globalization. The authors have new and important things to say about trade and the Industrial Revolution, the Great Divergence, the extent and driving forces of the globalization of trade in different periods, and the possibility of another globalization backlash. A marvelous achievement.”―Nicholas Crafts, University of Warwick

“The significance of this work lies in its comprehensiveness and the unflagging thoughtfulness of its analysis. It is very rare to find such detailed historical coverage resting on such a solid theoretical foundation.”―Eric L. Jones, author of The European Miracle and Cultures Merging

“This book, magisterial in scope and execution, marries a reading of voluminous historical research with an economist’s sharp eye to what is important in shaping economies and events. The authors have drawn exhaustively on the secondary historical, political, and economic literature of the relevant periods and have integrated it faithfully with their own conceptual framework.”―Douglas A. Irwin, Dartmouth College

From the Back Cover

“Trade has been the economic foundation of international integration and globalization. But, as Findlay and O’Rourke show in this masterful, state-of-the-art historical survey, it has also been a very frequent cause of rivalry between nations and maritime conflict. No better book exists on the role that commerce has played in generating both the wealth of nations and the wars between them. The authors command the literature the way Victorian admirals ruled the waves.”–Niall Ferguson, Harvard University

“A work of extraordinary scope and ambition and a major achievement. Findlay and O’Rourke show how international trade opens an illuminating window onto fully a millennium of world economic history.”–Barry Eichengreen, University of California, Berkeley

The vision that emerges in this book is more powerful and encompassing than any previous study of world trade. It passes all the tests that an economic historian might require in terms of empirical evidence while also embodying a very clear view of the economics of globalization. The authors have new and important things to say about trade and the Industrial Revolution, the Great Divergence, the extent and driving forces of the globalization of trade in different periods, and the possibility of another globalization backlash. A marvelous achievement.”–Nicholas Crafts, University of Warwick

“The significance of this work lies in its comprehensiveness and the unflagging thoughtfulness of its analysis. It is very rare to find such detailed historical coverage resting on such a solid theoretical foundation.”–Eric L. Jones, author of The European Miracle and Cultures Merging

“This book, magisterial in scope and execution, marries a reading of voluminous historical research with an economist’s sharp eye to what is important in shaping economies and events. The authors have drawn exhaustively on the secondary historical, political, and economic literature of the relevant periods and have integrated it faithfully with their own conceptual framework.”–Douglas A. Irwin, Dartmouth College

About the Author

Ronald Findlay is the Ragnar Nurkse Professor of Economics at Columbia University. He is the author of Factor Proportions, Trade, and Growthand Trade, Development, and Political Economy. Kevin H. O’Rourke is professor of economics at Trinity College, Dublin. He is the coauthor of Globalization and History.

  • ASIN : 0691143277
  • Publisher : Princeton University Press (August 30, 2009)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 648 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 9780691143279
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0691143279
  • Item Weight : 2 pounds
  • Dimensions : 6 x 1.5 x 9.1 inches

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