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The Role of Nationhood in the Economic Development of the USA

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  • Gavin Wright

Abstract

August 2000 In the study of American economic history, it is not standard to ask whether national political independence was essential for the remarkable economic development of the 19th and 20th centuries. The goal of this paper is to reopen consideration of this neglected topic. It argues that the characteristic American patterns of economic development would not have been possible in the absence of the institutional arrangements that emerged from the 1780s and 1790s. And these in turn would not have occurred, at least not at that time and in that way, if there had not been an American Revolution in 1776.

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  • Gavin Wright, 2000. "The Role of Nationhood in the Economic Development of the USA," Working Papers 00024, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:wop:stanec:00024
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    File URL: http://www-econ.stanford.edu/faculty/workp/swp00024.pdf
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    1. Rousseau, Peter L. & Sylla, Richard, 2005. "Emerging financial markets and early US growth," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-26, January.
    2. Harley, C. Knick, 1992. "International Competitiveness of the Antebellum American Cotton Textile Industry," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(03), pages 559-584, September.
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