Title: Islamic Roots Of Capitalism: Egypt 1760-1840
Publisher: University Of Texas Press
Publication Date: 1979
Book Condition: Very Good In Dustjacket
Edition: 1st Edition.
Austin. 1979. University Of Texas Press. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Dustjacket. Foreword by Afaf Lutfi Al-Sayyid Marsot. Middle East Series No. 4. 296 pages. hardcover. 0292703333. keywords: Egypt History Capitalism. inventory # 18668. FROM THE PUBLISHER - This study is a provocative challenge to the Western-centered view of the development of the modern world economic system. Contrary to the theories of Weber and Lukács, Peter Gran finds that a significant development toward capitalism took place in parts of the Middle East during the period 1760 to 1840. Gran portrays in detail the period in which Egyptian Muslim merchants and government officials carried on the function of capitalist transformation. He questions a basic premise of modernization theory that no development could have taken place before the coming of the West. Focusing on the nature of the impending transformation in Islamic cultural terms, he brings to light a number of heretofore unknown figures and their writings. A survey of these works shows a developing, utilitarian approach to knowledge, a naturalistic causality, and a capacity for realism in aesthetic expression. However, when the processes of capitalist transformation shifted out of indigenous hands, Islamic thought in Egypt took a more fatalistic philosophical turn. Throughout the book, one is aware of the steady growth of forces working against Egyptian capitalism, including the rise of Greeks and Armenians and Napoleon’s invasion of 1798. As capitalism increased in profitability and influence, western Europeans in the industrializing nations allied themselves with Greeks, Armenians, and Christians to try to dislodge Egyptian, Syrian, and Turkish merchants and producers. Later development of the entire industrial world system would depend on these alliances and on the outcome of the struggles over markets which local capitalists in the Middle East had created and sought to hold. ‘This study by Peter Gran is a seminal work. surely essential reading for all students concerned with the history of Egypt.’—Richard P. Mitchell. Bookseller Inventory # 18668
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