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Commerce in the Post-Renaissance World

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24 July 2010
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Commerce in the post-Renaissance World

Commerce, throughout the post-renaissance era has become increasingly more important. In the seventeenth century, the idea of Technological Project (control of nature for human benefit) was introduced by Bacon and Descartes. This was very important because at the time, many people thought in terms of conformity to nature, not in terms of transforming nature for human benefit. Thinking in terms of conformity constrains individual freedom as far as innovation, which is the opposite of what TP is trying to accomplish. Inner-directed individuals are required for TP in order to produce innovative ideas that are both scientific and technical, in order to understand and control natural processes. Such individuals are considered to be autonomous thinkers. Free market economy is essential to the idea of TP. Free market society is a system in which goods and services are exchanged, and privately owned. The reason this is essential is because free market society creates and involves competition. Having a free market society, that is competitive, leads to innovation. Competition is in my mind, the basis for innovation. People would not be driven to innovate or think in such creative ways if they were not being challenged, or competing against others is such an economy. Innovation (which is derived from free market economy and its competition) is very important in terms of TP. In the Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith argued that a free market economy encouraged innovation. He believed that innovation was derived from the specialization of labor. The free market economy leads to division of labor which therefore leads to specialization. Innovation derived from specialization includes such ideas as labor saving devices (such as the cotton gin), which then also leads to an increase in productivity.…...

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