Departmental Bulletin Paper 複式簿記は単式簿記の進化か?
Is Double-Entry Bookkeeping Evolution of Single-Entry Bookkeeping ?

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The conclusions reached in this paper are summarized as follows: (1)"Accrual basis" is an accounting method which books transactions as the standard when goods flow, as opposed to "cash basis" accounting, which books them as the standard when cash flows. According to this viewpoint, single-entry bookkeeping is not cash basis accounting immediately. And double-entry bookkeeping is not accrual basis accounting immediately. In other words, single-entry bookkeeping includes cash basis accounting and accrual basis accounting, and double-entry bookkeeping includes cash basis accounting and accrual basis accounting. (2)Sorting the three stages is common to Motegi and Foucault in discussing the history. Motegi asserts the "Theory of 3 stages in Accounting History," which is considered the best accounting art to be developed in a society where capitalism developed the most. It expresses the evolution theory of history, Darwinism, as a continuous conception of history. As opposed to Motegi, Foucault asserts the "Theory of 3 stages of Power History," which is a sudden change conception of history, paradigm shift thinking, and discontinuous conception of history. The two theories disagree fundamentally. (3)The relational theory without substance in "accounting" as the language of business does not remain only in the relation of double-entry bookkeeping and single-entry bookkeeping. Also regarding the relation of periodical accounting and accounting on the basis of separate ventures or lots of goods, as well as the relation of accrual basis and cash basis that were mentioned in Motegi's theory, the relational theory without substance represents the real state of accounting as the language of business. As long as accounting is "signe linguistique", all of the meanings of accounting words are delimited based on the theory of meaning as relation. (4)If we try to understand the meaning of the debit elements of trial balance, "asset" is a "non-expense" element, and "expense" is a "non-asset" element. Again if we try to understand the meaning of the credit elements of trial balance, "liability" is a "non-equity" and "non-revenue" element. "Equity" is a "non-liability" and "non-revenue" element. "Revenue" is a "non-liability" and "non-equity" element. (5)We consider that the shift to the double-entry bookkeeping method from the single-entry bookkeeping method is rather a sudden change (discontinuity) than evolution (continuity) in an accounting system. We agree with Foucault's power theory rather than Motegi's Round-the-World theory of accounting. Neoliberalism seems to be the background for asserting the shift to double-entry bookkeeping from single-entry bookkeeping in the accounting systems of administrative bodies (the Japanese government and local governments). If so, it will promote the worldwide phenomenon where the weak are victims of the strong in terms of the economy.

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