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Hobson and ImperialismRadicalism, New Liberalism, and Finance 1887-1938$
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P. J. Cain

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780198203902

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198203902.001.0001

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Dilemmas of a New Liberal: Free Trade, Foreign Investment, and Imperialism, 1903–1914

Dilemmas of a New Liberal: Free Trade, Foreign Investment, and Imperialism, 1903–1914

Chapter:
(p.165) Chapter Six Dilemmas of a New Liberal: Free Trade, Foreign Investment, and Imperialism, 1903–1914
Source:
Hobson and Imperialism
Author(s):

P. J. Cain (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198203902.003.0006

This chapter shows that, in the Edwardian period, Hobson's thinking on imperial matters was, at worst, schizoid and, at best, puzzling. One strand of his writings was in a direct line of succession from Imperialism: A Study. He also printed numerous articles in which he warned of the dangers of parasitism and its consequences. This was accompanied by a stream of writings contradicting some key arguments in Imperialism: A Study. His advocacy of free trade led him into dangerous intellectual territory. In An Economic Interpretation of Investment, Hobson presented imperialism not as a reversion to militancy and barbarism so much as a necessary stage in an economic globalisation that would eventually lead every area of the world, whether advanced or backward, towards liberty and prosperity.

Keywords:   J. A. Hobson, Edwardian period, Imperialism: A Study, free trade, militancy, barbarism, economic globalisation, liberty, prosperity

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