Uneven Centuries

Economic Development of Turkey Since 1820

Şevket Pamuk

Published by Princeton University Press

£27.00 / $34.17 / 208.44 TL
($/TL approx)



Hardback, 368 pages, first published December 2018
Book Description

Described as ‘the first comprehensive history of the Turkish economy’, Uneven Centuries has been widely acclaimed for its ‘rich and original’ broad approach. Published as the country slides into recession, it looks beyond apparent immediate causes for fluctuations of fortune to deeper, long-term forces.

Taking a global perspective on one of the largest areas in terms of population and economy in the developing world, Pamuk investigates Turkey’s economic history through four periods: the open economy during the nineteenth-century Ottoman era, the transition from empire to nation-state that spanned the two world wars and the Great Depression, the continued protectionism and import-substituting industrialisation after World War II, and the neoliberal policies and the opening of the economy after 1980. Making use of indices of GDP per capita, trade, wages, health and education, Pamuk argues that Turkey’s long-term economic trends cannot be explained only by changing economic policies, rates of investment, productivity growth, or structural change.

Şevket Pamuk is professor of economics and economics history at Boğaziçi University in Istanbul and Chair of Contemporary Turkish Studies at the European Institute, London School of Economics and Political Science. His books include A Monetary History of the Ottoman Empire and Ottoman Empire and European Capitalism, 1820–1913.

Reviews for Uneven Centuries

” A major accomplishment, this book will be a standard reference for years to come.” Dani Rodrik, author of Straight Talk on Trade

“A must-read for anybody interested in Turkish economic history and the general institutional and economic problems of the developing world.” Daron Acemoglu, co-author of Why Nations Fail

“To say that this book is seminal would be an understatement. With its extraordinarily rich and original information, brilliant insights, sophisticated analysis, and admirably clear prose, Uneven Centuries will set the standard for studying the economic history of the non-Western world for many years to come.” Reşat Kasaba, author of A Moveable Empire

“In his groundbreaking economic history of Turkey, Şevket Pamuk analyses the causes behind two centuries of uneven economic development–conflicting institutions that as they changed could simultaneously encourage growth but also hold it back.” Philip T. Hoffman, author of Why Did Europe Conquer the World?

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