Not available in 2021/22
China's Traditional Economy and its Growth in the Very Long-Term
This information is for the 2021/22 session.
Prof Kent Deng SAR 5.17
This course is available on the BSc in Economic History, BSc in Economic History with Economics and BSc in Economics and Economic History. This course is not available as an outside option nor to General Course students.
The course explores the main aspects China's economic growth in the very long term from c.1000 AD to 1800, It begins with a survey of general models/themes in Chinese economic history, followed by particular issues: the formation, expansion and the function of the Chinese empire; Confucian values and state economic polices; property rights; peasantry and peasant economy; proto-industrialisation; commerce and trade; science and technology; demographic fluctuations; living standards; external shocks and foreign influence; internal rebellions and revolutions; reforms and modernisation.
This course is delivered through a combination of classes and lectures totalling a minimum of 40 hours across Michaelmas Term and Lent Term. This year, some or all of this teaching will be delivered through a combination of virtual classes and flipped-lectures delivered as short online videos. This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Michaelmas and Lent Term.
Students are expected to do prior reading and to make presentations on a regular basis.
A full reading list and course outline are distributed at the beginning of the course. The following readings provide indication of the scope and nature of materials used in the course: K G Deng, 'A Critical Survey of Recent Research in of Chinese Economic History', Economic History Review (2000); J K Fairbank, Chinese Thought and Institutions (1957); M Elvin, The Pattern of the Chinese Past (1973); C A Ronan, The Shorter Science and Civilisation in China (1978-86); J Y Lin, 'The Needham Puzzle: Why the Industrial Revolution did not Originate in China', Economic Development and Cultural Change (1995); G W Skinner, The City in Late Imperial China (1977); J Lee & F Wang, One Quarter of Humanity (1999); K Pomeranz, The Great Divergence, Europe, China and The Making of the Modern World Economy (2000); A Watson, Economic Reform and Social Change in China (1992); R B Wong, China Transformed (1997). ‘Imperial China under the Song and Late Qing’, in Andrew Monson and Walter Scheidel (eds), Fiscal Regimes and Political Economy of Premodern States, Cambridge University Press: ch. 10 (pp. 308–42). Deng, Kent and Zheng, Lucy (2015) Economic restructuring and demographic growth: demystifying growth and development in Northern Song China, 960–1127 Economic History Review, 68 (4). 1107-1131.
Exam (70%, duration: 3 hours) in the summer exam period.
Essay (10%, 2000 words) in the MT.
Essay (10%, 2000 words) in the LT.
Class participation (10%) in the MT, LT and ST.
Course selection videos
Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.
Important information in response to COVID-19
Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.
Department: Economic History
Total students 2020/21: 6
Average class size 2020/21: 6
Capped 2020/21: Yes (15)
Value: One Unit
Personal development skills
- Team working
- Problem solving
- Application of information skills
- Application of numeracy skills
- Specialist skills