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Paying for the Liberal State
The Rise of Public Finance in Nineteenth-Century Europe

$38.99 (C)

José Luís Cardoso, Pedro Lains, Martin Daunton, Jan Luiten Van Zanden, Arthur Van Riel, Richard Bonney, Mark Spoerer, Michael Pammer, Lennart Schön, Giovanni Federico, Francisco Comin, Larry Neal
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  • Date Published: September 2013
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107686489

$ 38.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Public finance is a major feature of the development of modern European societies, and it is at the heart of the definition of the nature of political regimes. Public finance is also a most relevant issue in the understanding of the constraints and possibilities of economic development. This book is about the rise and development of taxation systems, expenditure programs, and debt regimes in Europe from the early nineteenth century to the beginning of World War I. Its main purpose is to describe and explain the process by which financial resources were raised and managed. The volume presents studies of nine countries or empires that are considered highly representative of the widest European experience on the matter and discusses whether there are any common patterns in the way the different European states responded to the need for raising additional resources to pay for the new tasks they were performing.

    • Innovative, comprehensive approach to 19th-century public finance in different European countries
    • Contributors to the book are well-known scholars with an important published record in the field
    • Contributes to a better understanding of the historical foundations of present-day European public finance systems
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    Reviews & endorsements

    “Historians have long puzzled over the fact that taxes, government spending, and government debt rose as a share of the economy at the same time that institutions became more liberal in the sense of allowing, and lightly taxing, freer markets. This well-structured team study reconciles global patterns with the diversity of eight countries’ individual trajectories across the long nineteenth century. Yes, successful development did follow a general evolution in fiscal structure, yet the national departures from the global path prove as instructive as the average tendency itself.” – Peter H. Lindert, University of California, Davis

    “A recent wave of historical literature has dealt in depth and sophistication with state formation in early modern Europe. The editors of this volume are to be warmly congratulated for recruiting such a top-class team of scholars to take that fascinating and important theme in European history forward from l815 into the twentieth century.” – Patrick Karl O’Brien, FBA, London School of Economics

    “How the foundations of liberal societies in Europe were established from a financial point of view is the topic of this book. In continental Europe, the transition from mercantilism to liberalism was painstaking, and failure was often more significant than success in comparison to the U.K. or U.S. experiences. Designing acceptable and enforceable rules about the distribution of the costs of the modern state was at the core of the political struggle in nineteenth-century Europe, and important lessons can be derived for present-day developing countries in which state formation is still at stake. The contributions to this well-edited volume represent the first comprehensive and successful attempt to address this important issue.” – Leandro Prados de la Escosura, Universidad Carlos III, Madrid

    “Paying for the Liberal State deals with the evolution of tax systems, expenditure programs, and debt regimes in Europe during the century before World War I, right on the eve of the modern welfare state. This is a wonderful collection by outstanding scholars who make this book a must-read for those who appreciate the role of political economy in driving the wealth of nations.” – Jeffrey G. Williamson, Harvard University and University of Wisconsin

    “A team of outstanding scholars shows how the success of the nineteenth-century European liberal state was to a considerable extent predicated on the efficiency and fairness of taxation and public expenditure. Lessons for the present abound.” – Gianni Toniolo, Duke University

    "Paying for the Liberal State makes three key contributions. Prior to its publication, there was no book-length investigation of the development of public finances in Europe after 1815.... With its focus on detailed case histories, Paying for the Liberal State also complements the cross-country, econometrics-oriented literature that covers the classic gold standard era from the 1870s-1913. Finally, by providing a clear and accessible account of the evolution of public finances over the long run, Paying for the Liberal State will be of use to scholars in neighboring disciplines that study the interplay between politics and fiscal change." - Mark Dincecco, IMT Lucca Institute for Advanced Studies, EH.NET

    "This is a compelling work that students, fiscal and financial policy makers, and informed generalists will find of value.... Highly recommended." - Choice

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2013
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107686489
    • length: 326 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.48kg
    • contains: 50 b/w illus. 1 map 28 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction José Luís Cardoso and Pedro Lains
    1. Creating legitimacy: administering taxation in Britain, 1815–1914 Martin Daunton
    2. The development of public finance in the Netherlands, 1815–1914 Jan Luiten Van Zanden and Arthur Van Riel
    3. The apogee and fall of the French Rentier Regime, 1801–1914 Richard Bonney
    4. The evolution of public finances in nineteenth-century Germany Mark Spoerer
    5. Public finance in Austria-Hungary, 1820–1913 Michael Pammer
    6. The rise of the fiscal state in Sweden 1800–1914 Lennart Schön
    7. Always on the brink: Piedmont and Italy Giovanni Federico
    8. Public finance and the rise of the liberal state in Spain, 1808–1914 Francisco Comin
    9. Public finance in Portugal, 1796–1910 José Luís Cardoso and Pedro Lains
    10. The monetary, fiscal, and political architecture of Europe, 1815–1914 Larry Neal.

  • Editors

    José Luís Cardoso, Universidade de Lisboa
    José Luís Cardoso is Research Professor at the Institute of Social Science of the University of Lisbon. He was full professor of economics and history of economics at the Technical University of Lisbon, Portugal, and visiting professor at several Portuguese and foreign universities. He is coauthor of A History of Portuguese Economic Thought (1998) and author of several books on the Portuguese history of economics from a comparative perspective. He has published in History of Political Economy, European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Journal of the History of Economic Thought, History of Economic Ideas, Journal of Socio-Economics, History of European Ideas, Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science, Financial History Review, and Economies et Societés. His research interests also include the economic history and methodology of economics. He is the general editor of the series Classics of Portuguese Economic Thought and co-founder and co-editor of the European Journal of the History of Economic Thought.

    Pedro Lains, Universidade de Lisboa
    Pedro Lains is Research Professor at the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon. He is editor of Análise Social, Secretary-General of the European Historical Economics Society, and member of the Instituto Laureano Figuerola at the Universidad Carlos III, Madrid. He was Director of Imprensa de Ciências Sociais (2004-7) and President of the Portuguese Economic and Social History Association (2003-7). He has published in Análise Social, European Review of Economic History, Explorations in Economic History, Historical Research, Open Economies Review, Research in Economic History, Revista de Historia Economica, and Scandinavian Economic History Review. His most recent books are História Económica de Portugal, 1700–2000 (2005, with A. Ferreira da Silva); Classical Trade Protectionism, 1815–1914 (2006, with J.-P. Dormois); Em Nome da Europa, 1986–2006 (2007, with M. Costa Lobo); História da Caixa Geral de Depósitos, 1910–1974 (vol. 2, 2008); Agriculture and Economic Development in Europe since 1870 (2008, with V. Pinilla); and Portugal sem Fronteiras: Os novos horizontes da economia portuguesa (2009).


    José Luís Cardoso, Pedro Lains, Martin Daunton, Jan Luiten Van Zanden, Arthur Van Riel, Richard Bonney, Mark Spoerer, Michael Pammer, Lennart Schön, Giovanni Federico, Francisco Comin, Larry Neal

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