Re: Reply to Nikolai

Tue, 25 Feb 1997 13:44:46 -0500 (EST)
A. Gunder Frank (

I am beginning to realize the the concept of EXPANSION of Europe itself
is what is misguiding the perceptions of what really went on in the real
world. It would be much more accurate - and thereby easier to
see/understand what "really" happened, to speak in terms of European
ATTACHMENT OR LINKAGE TO ASIA, of course using American money to buy
itself into the Asian market as Jim Blaut rightly insists - though he is
not the first to do so, since all European contemporaries KNEW that and
Adam Smith registered it long ago. So it is the "European expansion"
glasses, whether rose or black colored [leyenda rosa o negra en el
debate espan~ol], which "cause" the MISpercetion of what went on, most
certainaly before 1757 Battle of Plassey in India. The New world, and even
Siberia, were EXCEPTIONAL, and NOT the rule. As my geographer friend Phil
Wagner pointed out to me at 3 AM last night [Vancouver time], in the
Americas - he did not say so but in siberia as well - Europeans were able
to use military/commercial power to take over the overland trade and
production sites. Everywhere else in the world [that is in the most
populous and economically richest and productive parts] Europeans did
and could NOT do any such thing. they lacked both the military power to do
so, and they had nothing to sell or give in exchange as trade goods,
except their American silver which was the ONLY European export, so
all the Europeans could and did do was to use their American silver to
buy a third class seat on the Asian wagon - or more precisely on the
marginal Asian coastal cabotage boat, and to establish a few TEMPORARY
marginal expatriate emporia trading posts, or more accurately to rent
some space in them from the Asians on a temporary basis, at Hormuz,Goa,
Malacca, Macao, Nagasaki, and a couple of spots in Southeast Asia,
eg Batavia or where as in Manila the Chinese residents and traders
[AND TRADE!] outnumbered/outcompeted the European ones 10-20 to 1.
NONE of that qualifies for or justifies the Eurocentric terminology
"European EXPANSION", better translated into Eurocentric bullshit.

Respectfully submitted - to the historical evidence!

gunder frank On Tue, 25 Feb 1997,
Nikolai S. Rozov wrote:

> Date: Tue, 25 Feb 1997 22:09:46 -0600 (NSK)
> From: "Nikolai S. Rozov" <>
> Subject: Re: Reply to Nikolai
> dear Jim,
> i don't mind against the crucial role of colonization but
> efficient colonization (as well as warfare) has certain systemic (political,
> financial, mental, social, technological etc etc) prerequisits. in fact
> Europe managed to use its chance as well as Russia used its chance in
> occupation Siberia (i almost fully agree here with Barense's msg).
> Perhaps Arabs, Turks, Indian and Chinese people had up to 1500 in
> principle the same or even better opportunities (finance system, marytime
> skills, weapons, demographical resourses, etc) for colonization
> far-away countries or Northern-East Asia but they did not do it!
> Rusian territorial expansion was in fact a prolonged geopolitical policy
> of Moscovia.
> I still think that such dynamic strategy (in G.Snooks's terms) as
> investment in extraordianry long and dangerous sea adventures with non-
> clear results, mass recruitment, the Will for Expansion (to transform Nietzshe
> formule) is specific for Western Europe. Surely it is not a miracle but
> this dynamic strategy did lead to miraclous - extraordinary (and certainly
> tragic for millions of non-Europeans) historical results.
> best regards, Nikolai
> > Nikolai:
> >
> > You points are all valid, in my opinion, if they refer to processes occurring
> > after the late 16th century -- after the huge accumulation of gold and silver,
> > and after the beginnings of the slave trade and slave plantations. In other
> > words, I believe that nothing that existed in Europe prior to 1492 suggests a
> > potential for a later "rise of Europe" above other civilizations. Colonialism
> > started the process and there was no "European miracle." I defend this position
> > in my book and in articles published in the journals _Science and Society_
> > (1989) and _Political Geography_ (1992).
> >
> > Jim
> >
> > ***********************************************************
> Nikolai S. Rozov # Address:Dept. of Philosophy
> Prof.of Philosophy # Novosibirsk State University
> # 630090, Novosibirsk
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