Reading and answers the question: "The economic history of the United States", one scholar has written,
"is the history of the rise and development of the capitalistic system."
The colonists of the eighteenth century pushed forward what those
of the seventeenth century had begun: the expansion and elaboration
5 of an economy born in the great age of capitalist expansion.
Our excellent natural resources paved the way for the development
of abundant capital to increase our growth. Capital includes the
tools-such as machines, vehicles, and buildings-that make the outputs
10 of labor and resources more valuable. But it also includes the funds
necessary to buy those tools. If a society had to consume everything
it produced just to stay alive, nothing could be put aside to increase
future productions. But if a farmer can grow more corn than his family
needs to eat, he can use the surplus as seed to increase the next
15 crop, or to feed workers who build tractors. This process of capital
accumulation was aided in the American economy by our cultural heritage.
Saving played an important role in the European tradition; it contributed
to Americans' motivation to put something aside today for the tools
to buy tomorrow.
The great bulk of the accumulated wealth of America, as distinguished
from that which was consumed, was derived either directly or indirectly
from trade. Though some manufacturing existed, its role in the accumulation
of capital was negligible. A merchant class of opulent proportions
25 was already visible in the seaboard cities, its wealth the obvious
consequence of shrewd and resourceful management of the carrying
trade. Even the rich planters of tidewater Virginia and the rice
coast of South Carolina finally depended for their genteel way of
life upon the ships and merchants who sold their tobacco and rice
30 in the markets of Europe. As colonial production rose and trade expanded,
a business community emerged in the colonies, linking the provinces
by lines of trade and identity of interest.1. With what subject is this passage mainly concerned?
2. The phrase "paved the way for" in line 7 is closest in meaning to
3. In line 10 the word "it" refers to
4. According to the passage, capital includes all of the following EXCEPT
5. In line 10, the word "funds" is closest in meaning to
6. The phrase "put aside" in lines 13 is closest in meaning to
7. According to the passage, which of the following would lead to accumulating capital?
8. It can be inferred from the passage that the European ancestors of early Americans
9. According to the passage, the emergence of a business community in the colonies was a result of