Compulsory course for students on MSc in Quantitative Economic History.
The topic of the Essay is chosen by the students in close consultation with their supervisors. The purpose of the essay is to introduce students to the practice of historical research through the completion of a small, self-contained project that involves the use of quantitative methods in the analysis of historical change. It builds on competencies acquired in the core economic history and economics courses of the MSc. It must demonstrate the ability to formulate and motivate a research question, reflect adequate knowledge of the relevant literature in economic history and economics, make effective use of appropriate quantitative methods, and show critical capacity in the interpretation of the evidence and findings. Selection of title: The title must be approved by the student's supervisor. An agreed provisional title and an outline of the Essay must be submitted by week 3 of Lent Term.
This course explores the economic history of war(s) from the late Middle Ages to the 20th century within a comparative framework. Key themes examined include: long-term preparation for war - from bullionism to autarchy; state formation and deformation; organising warfare - from Renaissance condottiere to security firms; resource mobilisation - finance, material inputs, human capital; resource allocation - production and consumption; human and economic consequences of war; post-war reconstructions. The historical cases studied include the Hundred Years War, the Thirty Years War, the European wars of the 18th century, the Napoleonic Wars, the American Civil War, the First and Second World Wars, the Vietnam War.
Syllabus: This course examines the development of shipping, sea power and maritime-related industries in East and Southeast Asia, c. 1600–1860. It deals with indigenous growth in Asia, external shock from the West and the formation of the global market.
COURSE CONTENT: Topics include: (1) introduction to theories and models; (2) sailing conditions and sea routes in Asian waters and strategic importance of Asian waters in the global sense; (3) development of shipping technology and emergence of naval capacity; (4) function and pattern of long-distance trade and formation of regional markets and networks; (5) home economy and linkages to the home economy; (6) maritime exploration, conquests, migration and diasporas; (7) role of the state and officials: policies and undertakings; (8) rise and impact of modern sea power: conquests, expansion, colonialism, imperialism and capitalism; (9) regional hegemony and the process of globalisation in Asia; (10) post-1860, the beginning of the end and an ‘Asian Age’?
The subject of the dissertation should relate broadly to one of the economic history taught courses taken by the student. It should be a critical survey of a well-defined problem in the literature. It must demonstrate adequate knowledge of appropriate literature in Economic History and an ability to handle problems of evidence and explanation. Selection of title: The title must be approved by the student's supervisor. A provisional title should be agreed by mid-LT.