Generalized Trust in Taiwan and (as Evidence for) Hirschman’s doux commerce Thesis

Social Theory and Practice 46 (1):1-25 (2020)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Data from the World Values Survey shows that generalized trust in Mainland China—trust in out-group members—is very low, but generalized trust in Taiwan is much higher. The present article argues that positive interactions with out-group members in the context of Taiwan’s export-oriented economy fostered generalized trust—and so explains this difference. This line of argument provides evidence for Albert O. Hirschman’s doux commerce thesis, that market interaction can improve persons and even stabilize the social order. The present article defends this point by separating two theses that Hirschman combines under that label, a countervailing forces thesis and a doux commerce thesis narrowly understood. These theses offer different explanations (or mechanisms) for how commerce could have those positive effects. The data about Taiwanese trust practices provides evidence for the latter.

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP
2020-03-09

Downloads
548 (#35,168)

6 months
138 (#29,556)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Marc A. Cohen
Seattle University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Add more references