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Issue 1: Summer 2004 : Globalization
Updated December 2012

History of Globalization

While globalization is often referred to as a contemporary or modern phenomenon, globalization can be studied from a historical perspective, by using the historical record spanning many centuries or millennia. A historical analysis of globalization, its origins, growth and implications, can provide a more comprehensive look, and better understanding of the concept and discussion surrounding globalization.

Given the increasing amount of literature on globalization and its numerous interpretations, many scholars agree that presently it is even more important to understand the historical context of globalization. Much of the literature provided discusses how the global economy of the 21st century is built upon the foundation and expansion of world commerce and trade established many centuries ago.

This section presents literature that examines the historical aspects of globalization by looking at its origins, the history of international economics and trade, and the history of international finance, exchange and global markets. It is the intention of this section to provide a compilation of material that presents a historical and comprehensive analysis of the discussion of globalization.

Globe of the world from the
Theodor Horydczak Collection
(Library of Congress)
Reproduction number: LC-H814- 2271-004-A

Table of Contents

Defining Globalization
History of Globalization
Elements of Globalization
Trends in Globalization
Electronic Resources/Finding Aids

Historical Analysis    History of International Economics & Trade    

History of International Finance & Global Markets        Internet Resources

Historical Analysis

Foreman-Peck, James. Historical Foundations of Globalization. Cheltenham: UK: Edward Elgar, 1998.
LC Call Number: HF1418.5 .H57 1998
LC Catalog Record: 98024874

The fifth volume of the series, The Globalization of the World Economy, is comprised of a collection of scholarly essays examining globalization from the mid 19th century to 1945.

Hopkins, A.G. Globalization in World History. New York: Norton, 2002.
LC Call Number: D883 .G56 2002
LC Catalog Record: 2002071936

A collection of studies that provide a historical analysis of globalization. The book examines the historical diversity of globalizing forces and the process of globalization throughout the world dating back to the 15th century.

O’Rourke, Kevin H, and Williams, Jeffrey G. Globalization and History: The Evolution of a Nineteeth-Century Atlantic Economy. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press, 1999.
LC Call Number: HF1711 .O76 1999
LC Catalog Record: 99017963

This publication conducts a rigorous examination of the history of globalization dating back to the mid 18th century. The authors provide a thorough analysis of global commerce, trade, and global capital markets, which includes many empirical studies with supporting data (tables and graphs).

Seavoy, Ronald E. Origins and Growth of the Global Economy: From the Fifteenth Century Onward. Westport, CT: Prager, 2003.
LC Call Number: HF352 .S357 2003
LC Catalog Record: 2002029898

The author looks at the history of the global market up to the present-day global market, discussing early international commerce and trade, and its origins in 15th century Western Europe.

Williamson, Jeffrey G. Winners and Losers Over Two Centuries of Globalization. NBER Working Paper No. 9161. National Bureau of Economic Research. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. 2003. External Link External Link [PDF format: 614 KB / 60 p.]

This study examines globalization over the past two centuries measuring various economic disparities throughout the world and conducting comparative economic analysis. The study concludes with four lessons of history.

History of International Economics & Trade

Dimand, Robert W. The Origins of International Economics. London; New York: Routledge, 2004.
LC Call Number: HF1379 .O75 2004
LC Catalog Record: 2003060550

A collection of scholarly essays within a ten volume set, which study the orgins of international economics to the mid 1960's. This collection thoroughly examines international trade theory looking at both macro and microeconomic aspects, and exchange rates.

Estevadeordal, Antoni, and Taylor, Alan M., editors. A Century of Missing Trade? NBER Working Paper No. 8301. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. May 2001. External Link External Link [PDF format: 155 MB / 22 p.]

This study examines the major trading zone that inspired the factor abundance theory, the Old and New Worlds of the pre-1914 "Greater Atlantic" economy. The authors apply modern-day tests to historical data.

Hugill, Peter J. World Trade Since 1431: Geography, Technology, and Capitalism. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University, 1993.
LC Call Number: HC21 .H84 1993
LC Catalog Record: 92006765

Publication identifies the relationship between geography, technology and economy since 1431, and argues that the interaction between these factors have influenced the evolution of the modern-day global capitalist system. The book includes historical data, photographs, and maps.

Kenwood, A.G., and Lougheed, A.L., editors. The Growth of the International Economy 1820-2000: An Introductory Text. 4th ed. London; New York: Routledge, 1999.
LC Call Number:HC1359 .K465 1999
LC Catalog Record: 98033134

An introductory level text for the study of international economy dating back to the early 19th century, examining the growth of economic growth between nations. This edition includes topics such as globalization and the world economy; growth of regional trading blocs; and the Asian financial crisis.

Schenk, Catherine R. International economic relations since 1945. 1st ed. Abingdon, Oxon ; New York, NY : Routledge, 2011.
LC Call Number: HF1359 .S34 2011 LC Catalog Record: 2010048564

This is a chronological look at international economic relations post war and though the global financial crisis.

Taylor, Alan M. Globalization, Trade, and Development: Some Lessons from History. NBER Working Paper No. 9326, . Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. November 2002. External Link External Link [PDF format: 413 KB / 39 p.]

This paper examines the discussion and research surrounding the origins of globalization, its causes and consequences, and considers the lessons that can be learned from historical research in order to better understand current linkages between trade and development.

History of International Finance & Global Markets

Andrews, David M. Orderly change : international monetary relations since Bretton Woods. Ithaca : Cornell University Press, 2008.
LC Call Number: HG3881 .O647 2008
LC Catalog Record: 2007049028
Table of contents

Goes over the history of international monetary relations since Bretton Woods and the creation of the IMF and World Bank.

Eichengreen, Barry J. Globalizing Capital : a history of the international monetary system. 2nd ed. Princeton : Princeton University Press, c2008.
LC Call Number: HG3881 .E347 2008
LC Catalog Record: 2008018813
Table of contents

This is an updated version of a title originally written in 1998. An historical overview of the international monetary system going back over 150 years.

Findlay, Ronald, and O'Rourke, Kevin H. Commodity Market Integration, 1500-2000. NBER Working Paper No. 8579. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. November 2001 External Link External Link [PDF format: 579 KB / 76 p.]

This paper examines and provides a summary about trends in international commodity market integration during the second half of the millennium. The paper discusses the history of trade between nations & regions, and how technology has greatly driven commodity integration, especially in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Jorion, Philippe, and Goetzmann, William N. A Century of Global Stock Markets. NBER Working Paper No. 7565. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. February 2000. External Link
Published as "Global Stock Markets in the Twentieth Century", Journal of Finance, Vol. 54,no. 3 (June 1999): 953-980.

This study conducts a historical analysis on the return on capital from world equity markets. The study examines capital appreciation indexes for 39 markets dating back to the 1920's.

Reis, Jaime. International Monetary Systems in Historical Perspective. London; New York: Macmillan Press; St. Martin's Press, 1995.
LC Call Number:HG205 .I558 1995
LC Catalog Record: 95004171

A collection of essays that review historical and modern attempts to create principals that govern international monetary relations and exchange rates over the past 150 years.

Rosseau, Peter L., and Sylla, Richard. Financial Systems, Economic Growth, and Globalization. NBER Working Paper No. 8323, June 2001. Cambridge, Mass: National Bureau of Economic Research. External Link External Link [PDF format: 305 KB / 53 p.]

A historical analysis that explores key issues surrounding financial and economic growth, and capital market integration. The study examines 17 countries covering the period from 1850-1997.

Internet Resources

A Quick Guide to the World History of Globalization, University of Pennsylvania External Link

A website dedicated to the history of globalization. This site covers a number of aspects related to globalization, which include: key concepts; a chronology of important historical events related to globalization; and definitions.

Financial Crisis, IMF External Link

The IMF tracks financial developments worldwide so that it can help policymakers with the latest forecasts and analysis of developments in financial markets. Much of the content is devoted to help policymakers weather the crisis and includes policy advice and other articles, documents, and background information.

Financial Crisis, World Bank External Link

World Bank focus on issues related to development. Of interest is The Global Financial Development Report. Other data and reports are available.

Global Financial Crisis, Brooking Institution External Link

Experts at Brookings continue to explore and write on the ongoing global effects of the crisis that began in earnest in 2007/2008.

Globalization, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy External Link

An online encyclopedia that provides a comprehensive analysis on the history of globalization, covering: 1. Globalization in the History of Ideas; 2. Globalization in Contemporary Social Theory; 3. Normative Challenges of Globalization; Bibliography; and Other Internet Resources.

Globalization in Historical Perspective, National Bureau of Economic Research External Link

This National Bureau of Economic Research Conference Report allows access to a number of full-text scholarly works, which examine historical perspectives of globalization. The papers were presented at a National Bureau of Economic Research Conference held May 3-6, 2001.

Globalization - International - resources selection for business professionals, public policy makers, and academic staff, by Applied Business External Link

The webpage provides a list of links to sites covering the subject of globalization.

The History of Globalization, YaleGlobal Online External Link

This webpage is dedicated to the study of the history of globalization. YaleGlobal Online is the online publication of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization.

Last Updated: 02/07/2017

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