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The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century$
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Andrew Porter

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198205654

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198205654.001.0001

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Economics and Empire: The Periphery and the Imperial Economy

Economics and Empire: The Periphery and the Imperial Economy

Chapter:
(p.53) 3 Economics and Empire: The Periphery and the Imperial Economy
Source:
The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century
Author(s):

B. R. Tomlinson

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198205654.003.0003

The two ‘paramount’ reasons for ‘the transformation of the earth’ in the modern period have been ‘the explosive increase of European population and its movement overseas, and the rise of the modern capitalist economy and its evolution into industrialism’. Both these phenomena peaked during the second half of the nineteenth century, and both were closely linked to British Imperial expansion in the periphery. In the periphery, the suppliers of Britain can be divided into two broad categories, determined by their suitability for colonization by European organisms, technology, values, and production methods. The economic expansion of the periphery in the nineteenth century Imperial system was largely driven by the resource needs of European industrial economies. Today, it is Asian capitalism, rather than that of industrial Europe and North America, that shows the developing countries of the world their future, and that shows up the limitations of the economic expansion outside Europe wrought by nineteenth century imperialism.

Keywords:   periphery, modern capitalist economy, Imperial expansion, Imperial system, industrial economies, Asian capitalism, imperialism

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