The Bank of Japan added quite some information and publicatios of interest to the student of Japanese financial history. First of all, it published an English version of Teranish Juro's article on the impact of banks on the prewar Japanese economic system (I earlier discussed the Japanese version, and comments by major Japanese economic historians). The abstract:
Received through H-Net:
The 2007 Annual Meeting and Spring Program of the Greater Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Chinese American Librarians Association will be held at the Library of Congress on April 25, 2007. This event is co-sponsored by the Asian Division of the Library. The details of the location and time is shown at the end of this announcement.
From the Library of Congress news-pages: Librarian of Congress James H. Billington Testifies on the Library's Digital Evolution. An excerpt:
Earlier this week, amazon.com announced the publication of Kobayashi Hideo's new book on the Research Bureau of the South Manchurian Railway Company. The book's description (in Japanese):
Bank of Japan's Mari OHNUKI wrote a paper on the Bank of Japan's role in Japan's financial market integration (1882-...). The paper is downloadable (.pdf-file) from the BOJ's IMES pages. Here's the abstract:
One of the purposes cited for establishing the Bank of Japan was to "facilitate finance" by promoting the nationwide integration of the regional financial markets, which until that point had been divided and functioned independently.
The Harvard-Yenching Library is pleased to announce its Travel Grant Program for the 2006-2007 academic year. The purpose of the grant is to assist scholars from outside the metropolitan Boston area in their use of the Harvard-Yenching Library's collections for research. There will be eleven grants of $400 each (three in Chinese, two in Korean studies, and six in Japanese studies) to be awarded on a merit basis to faculty members and to graduate students engaged in dissertation research. Priority consideration will be given to those at institutions where there is no or few library resources in the East Asian languages, and no major East Asian library collections are available nearby. Each grantee will also be provided with the privilege of free photocopying of up to 100 sheets. Please note that the awards must be used before August 1, 2007.
MARKETS AND MODERNITIES IN ASIA 2007-2008
The Asian Institute at the University of Toronto invites applications from established scholars to spend one or two semesters on campus participating in an interdisciplinary colloquium.
The year long colloquium investigates sites in Asia to examine the relationship between two types of historical and contemporary transformation: the formation of modern subjects and the formation of "the market" as a central feature of modern capitalism. Both "the market" and modern subjects are produced through specific political programs, regimes of knowledge, forms of regulation and applications of force. They are also produced through cultural work in the media, in literature, and in the intimate spheres of family and community life. Such work is contentious, and often contested. The notion of entrepreneurship, for example, is differently valorized depending on prevailing ideologies of gender and ethnicity, city and village; collective subjects or self-conscious social groups may form within or against market processes; and the interface between capitalism and colonial, fascist, democratic or neoliberal agendas is fraught with contradictions. By placing Asia at the center of the field of vision as it examines these complex dynamics, the colloquium aims to contribute to debates that too often take capitalism as it arose in Europe as "normal capitalism," the fixed point from which variations can be assessed. In so doing it aims to generate insights that are at once empirical and theoretical.
Received through H-Net:
For those who are located in the Washington DC area, please take advantage of this opportunity and learn more about the Asian collections at the Library of Congress. Library of Congress Asian Division Research Orientation10 a.m.-12 noon, Thursday October 19th, 2006 Whittall Pavilion, Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First Street SE, Washington, DCMetro: Capitol South on Orange/Blue Line
The Asia Society has referred to the Library of Congress Asian Division as Washington's best-kept secret. Indeed, the division houses a veritable treasure trove of materials on Asia. This free and open-to-the-public research orientation will introduce you to the people and tools to help you make the most of the Asian Division's fantastic collections. The session will cover five geographic areas within Asia:
Marc Flandreau and Clemens Jobst, 'The Ties that Divide: A Network Analysis of the International Monetary System, 1890–1910', The Journal of Economic History (2005) vol. 65. nr. 4, pp. 977-1007
Conventional studies of the late-nineteenth-century international monetary system refer heuristically to “core” and “peripheral” countries. In this article, we seek to provide rigorous foundations to such expressions. Applying a formal procedure borrowed from network analysis produces indices of centrality and systematic rankings. We show that the international monetary system of the late nineteenth century is best described as a three-tier system. Other findings include the discovery of a closely knitted European foreign exchange system, a complete lack of foreign exchange linkages within Latin America, emerging intra- Asian relations, and a fairly late ascendancy of the U.S. dollar.
I have read and studied Flandreau's and Jobst's excellent article with a lot of attention and interest. There are some major methodological issues here, especially where it concerns the willingness to take the 'course of exchange' bulletins of the time as the primary source for determining the status of a country in the late nineteenth century international system. This approach strikes me as justified. Market data are simply nonexistent for several countries; hence, as argued by Flandrea and Jobst, 'the network matrices (of countries quoting each others' currencies) provide a proxy for liquidity: evidence of active trade reveals the existence of a sufficiently large demand and supply to warrant the posting of prices.' (p. 983).