Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If you need an accessible version of this item please contact JSTOR User Support

The Political Economy of British Imperialism: Measures of Benefits and Support

Lance E. Davis and Robert A. Huttenback
The Journal of Economic History
Vol. 42, No. 1, The Tasks of Economic History (Mar., 1982), pp. 119-130
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2120505
Page Count: 12
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($34.00)
  • Cite this Item
If you need an accessible version of this item please contact JSTOR User Support
The Political Economy of British Imperialism: Measures of Benefits and Support
Preview not available

Abstract

The paper provides new evidence on the debate over the decision of the British to invest in empire in the period of 1860-1914. An examination of the flow of symbolic capital indicates that the Empire was not a major recipient until the end of the period. The largest transfers went to the "rest of the world" although a surprisingly large fraction was absorbed domestically. A study of the profits of British firms operating at home, in the Empire, and abroad shows that while the Empire was relatively very profitable in the years before 1880, domestic returns were higher from that date until the end of the Boer War. Moreover, those domestic returns were also higher than foreign from the mid-1870s to the mid-1880s and again throughout the 1890s. Finally, the evidence indicates that empire returns were as high as they were only because of substantial social subsidies from the British. The imperial experience could therefore be viewed more as a redistribution of income within the United Kingdom than as a transfer from the empire to the mother country.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
119
    119
  • Thumbnail: Page 
120
    120
  • Thumbnail: Page 
121
    121
  • Thumbnail: Page 
122
    122
  • Thumbnail: Page 
123
    123
  • Thumbnail: Page 
124
    124
  • Thumbnail: Page 
125
    125
  • Thumbnail: Page 
126
    126
  • Thumbnail: Page 
127
    127
  • Thumbnail: Page 
128
    128
  • Thumbnail: Page 
129
    129
  • Thumbnail: Page 
130
    130