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Report 2 - Essay Example

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Ever since the development of transportation systems particularly sea-faring ones, international trade or trade between distant territories started emerging. Apart from advancements in transport, this trade was facilitated by various historical, political and social reasons. In…
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Report Ever since the development of transportation systems particularly sea-faring ones, international trade or trade between distant territories started emerging. Apart from advancements in transport, this trade was facilitated by various historical, political and social reasons. In turn, this trade made optimum impacts, both positive and negative, on various geographic regions in different spheres. In that direction, it has been argued by Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson and James Robinson in The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutional Change, and Economic Growth that significant developments in the trade across the Atlantic Ocean only acted as the catalyst for the strong rise of Western Europe after 1500. That is, European countries on the West side had number of ports along the Atlantic Ocean, and these ports facilitated substantial trade with the New World, Africa, and Asia.
This trade aided the merchant groups and the monarchy to become strong forces, gaining not only financial resources but importantly political clout. As Acemoglu, Johnson and Robinson (551) point out the trade opportunities made the monarchy to ally with the merchant groups, and both were the “main beneficiaries of the early profits from Atlantic trade and plunder,” and no anti-establishment groups favoring changes in political institutions could become powerful enough to challenge them. In addition, due to this heightened trade in the Atlantic Ocean, ports cities underwent urbanization, thereby even changing the ‘physical outlook’ (infrastructures) of Western Europe.
Although, anti-establishment groups could not do anything, the merchant groups started becoming a strong force due to the economic clout they had, and even started dictating terms to the Monarchy. “Atlantic trade strengthened merchant groups by constraining the power of the monarchy, and helped merchants obtain changes in institutions to protect property rights.” (Acemoglu, Johnson and Robinson 546). These changes mainly led to subsequent positive economic growth that was particularly witnessed in Western Europe.
Work Cited
Acemoglu, Daron, Simon Johnson and James Robinson. “The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade,
Institutional Change, and Economic Growth”, American Economic Review, 95. 3
(2005): 546-579 Read More
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