자본주의 맹아론과 조선후기 상업 변동 －강만길 ≪朝鮮後期 商業資本의 發達≫을 중심으로－
The Theory of the Embryo of Capitalism and the Late Joseon Commercial Change: Focused on Kang, Man-gil's The Development of Commercial Capital in Late Joseon Period
The Development of Commercial Capital in Late Joseon Period published by Prof. Kang, Man-gil in 1973 is a work that proved the late Joseon society was a transitional period to modern society by raising question of formation and transformation of commercial capital in the late Joseon period based on faithful positive foundation. He formulated the quality of commerce in the late Joseon period as an Dogo(exclusive sale) commerce. He defined Dogo commerce as a type of commerce that broke down the base of traditional society and built a precondition for development of modern mode of production in the process of breakdown of the traditional society and establishment of modern society.
The theory of the embryo of capitalism is a historical view that assumes history recognition that even if there was no influence of foreign capitalism, Korea might enter in capitalist society gradually. It was the historical view that historians after liberation who had problems to overcome distorted historical views rooted from colonial rule, to build a new country and national culture should have. The theory of the embryo of capitalism is a historical view presuming Korean history having been progressed as a part of world history and has greatly contributed to criticizing and overcoming the theory of stagnation. Empirically it also contributed to making it clear the key factors of social Change in the late Joseon period such as economy of commodity and currency in the late Joseon period, formation of commercial capital, relationship between merchants and craftsmen.
Even if recently the position of the theory of the embryo of capitalism gets weaker as it faces with the criticism that it is an Euro-centric, unilinear historical view, it won't be shaken much since the historical images have been built on extensive proof.
Recent studies on commercial history have been made from the points of views that critically succeed Prof. Kang's researches. while his researches mainly focused on developments and changes in the commercial Change in the late Joseon period, recent ones are made focusing on the structure and operation of it. They are advanced to studies on the structures which define the essence of commerce in the late Joseon period, e.g. the systems of distribution of commodities through which commercial features such as the formation of commercial capital and the prevalence of Dogo commerce could be realized, and the market areas, the land and marine traffic routes and transportation, and the collusion between commercial capital and power.