Capitalism and Global Economics: Critical Analysis
Racial science is covered in module 2 concept 1 explains the attachment of science to the idea of subjugation of non-European peoples and enlightenment burden to “civilize” the rest of the globe. As an example, the writings of Nott (1) were used to justify slavery. Nott (2) was a surgeon whose ideologies were plausible to most people. He came up with a classification of races such as African, Caucasians, Americans, and Asians. As expected, Nott (1) argued that races were unequal with some races being superior to others scientifically. This argument was used to support the institution of slavery. Despite the obvious bias, Nott (6) was taken to be a renowned anthropologist of that era. It goes to show that the capital gains from slavery led many to justify the institution of slavery, especially using scientific reasoning which was considered the top-most justification for any action (Lecture 2a). It also meant that anything that had scientific backing had a future which is why scientific reasoning was sought for slavery in most cases to make a long-lasting endeavor (Lecture 2d). In Case 1, we covered slavery using the perspective of Olaudah Equiano. He was a slave who escaped slavery and got educated. His narrative of slavery leads to the idea that capitalism existed to a large extent due to slavery (Equiano 1). It can also be argued that slavery fed into capitalism meaning that nations that adopted it had better economies. The very nature of capitalism is to maximize profits. What better way to do it than use unpaid labor?
Capitalism also had its influence over colonialism. In module 2 concept 2, we covered details on the rule of colonial difference. It refers to the differing perspectives from the colonizers regarding social issues compared to the subjects (Lecture 2b). For instance, we covered how capitalist interests from European nations led them to consider their rules and guidelines on civility to suppress local cultures in India and the Ottoman Empire in Egypt. For instance, in the Ottoman empire, individuals could become part of the ruling class by learning varying degrees of formal education (Adamiak and Palhegyi 1). Learning Turkish in Ottoman or Confucianism in China could allow individuals to be accepted into the bourgeoise class. In Europe, the difference between the ruling class was protected by deliberate laws. The ruling class was determined by the wages given to the working class ensuring that this class does not become big enough to want to overcome the ruling class. Crossing from the working class to the ruling class was extremely difficult in Europe unlike other parts of the world. In spite of this difference, European economic experts considered their methods to be superior to the relatively fairer systems in ottoman empires or in Chinese empires where people could join the working class (Lecture 2c). This is what the rule of colonial difference explains.
Endemic reforms are another concept that capitalism managed to touch in various parts of the world. this concept basically means looking into non-European and non-American modernity. Interestingly, when nations not within Europe or American formed their unique modernity, it was perceived to be a pale imitation of the modernity from these two regions. The perspective that modernity could only come from Europe and America was shared by people within those regions only (Reşid 1). From the lectures, we covered china’s strengthening movement and the Meiji restoration in Japan in Case 1. Both Japan and China had endemic reforms by incorporating scientific and military technologies in their terms. Capitalism interests revealed the true intentions of European countries. In China, the European contingent was less supportive because China had sizeable resources that would help them in industrialization. They were, therefore, less supportive of the modernization activities there. In Japan, due to the low resources contained therein, European powers were more supportive of modernization (Guifen 1). Thus, endemic reforms were more successful in Japan than in China.