• "Social Sciences"
  • Date:07-01-98(SSC-No.003)
  • Size:60,656 Kb.
  • Words: 9141

The Topical Problems of Economic History

Valery BOVYKIN

Till the 19th century historians who were engulfed in the description of political developments and wars did not show any special interest in the studies of society's economic life. Their interest in this problem which allowed them to see the mechanism of social development with all its principal components in their interaction became one of the manifestations of converting history into a genuine science. The comprehension of the organic unity of politics and economics, their close interaction and interdependence motivated the attention that historians began to pay to the studies of the evolution of economic life. Now there is no need to prove that the cognition of the past is impossible without considering the processes of economic development. In that sense economic history is an inseparable part of history in general. In his time, Lucien Febvre, one of the founders of modern economic history, said, beginning the course of lectures on this subject, that economic and social history did not exist. There is history per se in all its integrity.(1) And much later, 2 Braudel whose part played in the development of economic history is extremely great noted that "noble or not, or less magisterial than other forms of history, economic history nonetheless involves all the problems inherent in the historian's craft, it is man's entire history seen from one particular point of view"(2).

If anything, economists related to economic history a bit earlier than the historians proper: Adam Smith paid in his Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations a lot of room to historical excurses.

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