Takeshi Hamashita, arguably Asia's premier historian of the longue durée, has been instrumental in opening a new field of inquiry in Chinese, East Asian and world historical research. Engaging modernization, Marxist and world system approaches, his wide-ranging redefinition of the evolving relationships between the East Asia regional system and the world economy from the sixteenth century to the present has sent ripples throughout Asian and international scholarship.

His research has led him to reconceptualize the position of China first in the context of an East Asian regional order and subsequently within the framework of a wider Euro-American-Asian trade and financial order that was long gestating within, and indeed contributing to the shape of, the world market.

This book presents a selection of essays from Takeshi Hamashita's oeuvre on Asian trade to introduce this important historian's work to the English speaking reader. It examines the many critical issues surrounding China and East Asia's incorporation to the world economy, including:

  • Maritime perspectives on China, Asia and the world economy
  • Intra-Asian trade
  • Chinese state finance and the tributary trade system
  • Banking and finance
  • Maritime customs.

chapter 1|11 pages

Editors' Introduction *

New Perspectives on China, East Asia, and the Global Economy

chapter 4|18 pages

Silver in Regional Economies and the World Economy

East Asia in the Sixteenth to Nineteenth Centuries

chapter 5|28 pages

The Ryukyu Maritime Network from the Fourteenth to Eighteenth Centuries

China, Korea, Japan, and Southeast Asia

chapter 7|31 pages

Foreign Trade Finance in China *

Silver, Opium, and World Market Incorporation, 1820s to 1850s

chapter 9|12 pages

Overseas Chinese Financial Networks

Korea, China, and Japan in the Late Nineteenth Century