Susan Wolcott

Susan Wolcott
Binghamton University | SUNY Binghamton · Department of Economics

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22
Publications
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Introduction
Skills and Expertise

Publications

Publications (22)
Article
We examine investment in bank branches on the Indian subcontinent in 1939 and 1946. In 1947, the states of India and Pakistan were created from the erstwhile colony of British India. Partition was destabilizing to both economies. We use branch expansion as a proxy for entrepreneur's pre‐partition predictions of the future of these regions. Our resu...
Article
Rulers and Capital in Historical Perspective: State Formation and Financial Development in India and the United States. By Abhishek Chatterjee. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2017. Pp. ix, 173. $45.95, hardcover. - Volume 78 Issue 3 - Susan Wolcott
Article
Selling Empire India in the Making of Britain and America, 1600–1830. By Jonathan Eacott. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2016. Pp. vii, 455. $45.00, hardcover. - Volume 77 Issue 4 - Susan Wolcott
Article
The goal of this book is to ascertain the effect of the English Industrial Revolution on the industries of the English colony of Bengal. The industrial history of Bengal predates that of England itself. Bengali textiles had been carried by Bengali ships throughout the Asian oceans for hundreds of years before the English arrived on the Indian subco...
Article
Full-text available
Scholars of Indian history suggest that the main deterrent to entrepreneurial activity in colonial India was the absolute shortage of capital. A large body of theoretical and empirical research suggests that the key to mobilizing capital is a well functioning financial market. Using various bank records of the colonial state, I determine that the c...
Article
It is well known that India's industrialization during the colonial period was painfully slow. In this paper I show that nearly 10 times as many workdays/worker were lost to textile strikes in India as were lost in comparable periods in the English and US industries. This much greater Indian strike activity is despite the fairly complete unionizati...
Chapter
This chapter examines the operation of rural credit markets in the postbellum South in the mirror of colonial India. Using the records of the 1929–1930 Provincial Bank Enquiry Committees (PBECs) and data on Indian rural expenditures and finance from 1951–1952 by the All-India Rural Credit Survey (AIRCS), it investigates the nature of agricultural c...
Article
This paper very briefly surveys current research on Asian economic development, and also discusses several recent papers on the contributions of economic history to understanding development. I then review the contributions of the papers in this special volume of Explorations in light of these two literatures.
Article
Full-text available
Newly collected data on India's textile industry over the years 1921-38 show strike rates far higher than those observed in the British or U.S. textile industries when they were at a similar stage of development, despite an absence of formal union organization or state support for collective bargaining. Colonial India's high strike frequency is har...
Chapter
The word ‘swadeshi’ is derived from the Bengali, svadesi, or from the Sanskrit, svadesin. Literally, it means from ‘one’s own country’ (Leadbetter 1993, p. 95). It came to mean the use in India of Indian manufactures or services in preference to imported goods or European provided services. Whatever emotional support it may have enjoyed in India, a...
Chapter
India’s caste system performed two fundamental functions: insurance through transfers between caste members and, in villages, insurance through protected job assignments across castes. In most of India the landlord had a social responsibility to maintain his lower caste workers in lean periods. This division of labour has been viewed as coercive an...
Article
Full-text available
Between 1890 and 1938 Japan experienced rapid economic growth. India stagnated. This national divergence was reflected in the performance of both countries' leading modern industiy, cotton textiles. The parallels between national and industry performance suggest the problems of the Indian textile industry may have been those of India as a whole. We...
Article
In the interwar period, Japanese textile firms were able to greatly increase labor efficiency and become the world's main exporter of cotton textiles. Meanwhile, the Indian industry stagnated and was forced to retreat behind tariff walls. This paper argues that the flexibility of the Japanese work force stemmed from its high turnover; the Indian la...
Article
The textbook explanation for Britain's high unemployment in the 1920s is that the return to gold at $4.86 left the currency overvalued. Recent estimates suggest that an 11 percent devaluation would have eliminated roughly half the unemployment in 1925. This article questions the validity of that conclusion. It measures the power of exchange rate de...
Article
Britain's textile industry contracted sharply in the interwar period due to the growth of domestic industries in many of its export markets. Lazonick and Mass argue that, because this growth was inevitable, British entrepreneurs should not have focused on the less developed countries. This article questions whether the interwar growth of the Indian...
Article
Full-text available
Microfinance is viewed as a major innovation which will decrease cultivators' reliance on moneylenders and expand agricultural production. Two defining characteristics are the elimination of collateral and collective liability for debt repayment. But moneylenders in colonial India operated similarly: credit was based on personal reputation, and the...
Article
Full-text available
Microfinance is viewed as a major innovation which will decrease cultivators' reliance on moneylenders. Two defining characteristics are the elimination of collateral and collective liability for debt repayment. But moneylenders in colonial India operated similarly: credit was based on personal reputation, and the extended family and caste were hel...

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