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Policy response to the Great Depression of the 1930s: Turkish neomercantilism in the Balkan context

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In examining the Turkish response to the crisis of the 1930s, this paper contributes to existing literature at three levels: economic policy conception, comparative case selection, and mode of explanation. First, it takes a holistic approach to economic policy (neomercantilism) by looking at its foreign trade and finance (autarkic), microeconomic (etatist), and macroeconomic (neoclassical orthodox) dimensions. Second, it locates the Turkish response in the Balkan context, where other small states responded to comparable stimuli. Third, while viewing the macroeconomic conservatism of Turkish neomercantilism as a situational necessity, it explains the autarkic dimension by the shared German metropolitan linkages of the Balkans as a region, and the etatist dimension by the Kemalist bureaucracy’s larger room for maneuver in a context of wider gap between political modernization and economic backwardness.
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Keywords: Balkans; Great Depression of the 1930s; International economic crises; autarky; economic policy; etatism

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada

Publication date: October 1, 2016

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