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Religious Foundations of Economic Behavior in Japan : Toward Diversified Models of Historical Growth
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This book compares the impacts of religious reforms on the pattern of economic behavior and economic growth in thirteenth- and fourteenth-century Japan with that during the early-modern period in England. In both countries the reforms raised the value of ordinary life in the secular world as a place for religious practices. In England the religious reform in the form of the introduction of Protestantism gave rise to the capitalistic work ethic and ethos to contribute to the public welfare in order to enhance the glory of God. This, together with the influence of the philosophy of empiricism, which emphasizes cognition based on individual experience, resulted in individualism and weak concerns about others nearby in secular activities. This attitude is closely related to the emergence of the mass production system in the form of supplying consumption goods to a public composed of people with invisible faces. In Japan, reform took the shape of the easing of religious training in Buddhism and this raised the value of the secular world as the place for religious practice, inducing people to be involved in the pursuit of religious truth in daily occupational lives (kyudo-shugi). The attainment of kyudo-shugi was evaluated by others nearby, so that there emerged production activities closely related to customers who took the role of evaluating the fruits of kyudo-shugi. The English system of mass production is supply-leading in the sense of being governed by the concern about the public welfare by supplies and the Japanese system demand-leading in the sense of close consideration for the satisfaction of individual customers. Through contrasting the experience of the two countries, this book emphasizes the diversity of historical growth models in various countries and rejects single-path theories such as naive modernization theory, a proto-industrialization model, or the Great Divergence hypothesis.
Genre: Business + Money Management, History
Series Title: Studies in Economic History
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Author: Juro Teranishi
Street Date: June 9, 2019
Item Number (DPCI): 248-34-0083
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