Incluye referencias bibliográficas (páginas -371) e índice. CONTENIDO: A world of surprising resemblances. Europe before Asia? Population, capital accumulation, and technology in explanations of European development -- Market economies in Europe and Asia -- From new ethos to new economy? Consumption, investment, and capitalism. Luxury consumption and the rise of capitalism -- Visible hands: firm structure, sociopolitical structure, and "capitalism" in Europe and Asia -- Beyond Smith and Malthus: from ecological constraints to sustained industrial growth. Shared constraints: ecological strain in Western Europe and East Asia -- Abolishing the land constraint: the Americas as a new kind of periphery -- Appendixes.