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Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Expansion Overseas II: New Imperialism, 1850-1945

P. J. Cain and A. G. Hopkins
The Economic History Review
Vol. 40, No. 1 (Feb., 1987), pp. 1-26
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Economic History Society
DOI: 10.2307/2596293
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2596293
Page Count: 26
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Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Expansion Overseas II: New Imperialism, 1850-1945
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Abstract

This article carries forward the interpretation set out in Part I, which was published in the last issue of the Review (XXXIX, 4, Nov. 1986, pp. 501-25). Part I suggested a way of approaching British history which avoided the stereotypes on which both Marxist and liberal historians of imperialism have tended to rely. The interpretation offered emphasized the economic weight and the political power of non-industrial but still capitalist forms of enterprise in the period 1688-1945. It then considered the ways in which these influences, dominated by the landed interest, shaped British history and the British presence abroad between 1688 and 1850. Part II deals with the reconstruction of the gentlemanly order in the middle of the nineteenth century, when new forms of property headed by finance and services gained precedence over land, and traces the influence of this expanding sector overseas, arguing that Britain's informal influence was growing, not declining, in the late nineteenth century and that the period after 1914 was one of continuing imperialist rivalry and not merely of the management of nationalism in an era of colonial retreat.

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