Examining the influence of Confucianism on the socioeconomic development of the Confucian Culture Area

Hasan, Rumy (2019) Examining the influence of Confucianism on the socioeconomic development of the Confucian Culture Area. Journal of Asian and African Studies, 18 (3). 233 -256. ISSN 0021-9096 (Accepted)

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Abstract

Unlike what are termed ‘world religions’, Confucianism cannot be characterised with the same precision in terms of its doctrines and practices, or the countries and regions in which it is predominant. While we can refer to ‘Christian-majority’ or ‘Muslim-majority’ countries, we cannot do the same for ‘Confucian-majority’ countries. This obviously means that generalising or suggesting the influence of Confucian ideas on socioeconomic development of countries or regions is rather more tenuous in comparison with other religions. Despite this difficulty, there is, nevertheless, a broad strand of opinion that accepts the existence of such an influence with respect to China and other East Asian countries, which notwithstanding their differences, is given the epithet of the Confucian Culture Area. We shall refer to several authors who take this stance as well as examining the core ideas of Max Weber in regard to Confucianism and development. In this paper, we aim to explore whether there are attributes of Confucianism that are conducive to economic growth and development and others that are an impediment. This is an important topic for discussion in that the East Asian economies that comprise the Confucian Culture Area are generally considered successful in regard to economic and social development in the post-colonial era. A well-known World Bank report published as far back 1993, in the aftermath of a widespread recession, termed this success as the ‘East Asian miracle’ (World Bank, 1993). This paper attempts to tease out the role of Confucianism in this supposed economic ‘miracle’.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Joy Blake
Date Deposited: 15 Nov 2019 13:41
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2019 16:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/88039

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