Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Europe's Growth ChampionInsights from the Economic Rise of Poland$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Marcin Piatkowski

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198789345

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198789345.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 28 May 2020

What Black Death was to Western Europe, Communism was to Central and Eastern Europe

What Black Death was to Western Europe, Communism was to Central and Eastern Europe

Chapter:
(p.82) 3 What Black Death was to Western Europe, Communism was to Central and Eastern Europe
Source:
Europe's Growth Champion
Author(s):

Marcin Piatkowski

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198789345.003.0004

I argue in this chapter that despite its ultimate social, economic, and moral bankruptcy, communism imposed on Poland after 1945 sowed the seeds of the country’s economic success after 1989. The old, feudal social structures were bulldozed to snap Poland out of growth-inhibiting extractive society equilibrium, creating a classless society, boosting social mobility, and securing good quality of education for all. Forced industrialization and unprecedented labour movements supported solid GDP growth rates in Poland until the 1960s, but low returns on investment, lack of technological progress, and external shocks caused declining growth rates in the 1970s, and economic stagnation in the 1980s. I conclude that the assumption that if Poland had returned to capitalism after 1945, it would have developed as quickly as the West, is simplistic. I show that a capitalist Poland would have faced significant challenges to growth, and convergence with the West would not have been guaranteed.

Keywords:   economic history, communism, industrialization, social mobility, convergence, economic stagnation, debt crisis, solidarity

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .