characterised by ‘unbridled capitalism’, and an example of
the economic dynamism – but also the extremes of wealth and
poverty – that could also be unleashed in Britain by a return to
During the period examined in this book, Hong Kong was
often portrayed as a territory free of the rules that constrained
economic choices elsewhere. Such portrayals were by no means the unique
The book is a comparative analysis of Scotland, Ireland and Wales’s participation in the English East India Company between c.1690 and c.1820. It explains the increasing involvement of individuals and networks from these societies in the London-based corporation which controlled contact between the early modern British and Irish Isles and one hemisphere of world trade. Scottish, Irish, and Welsh evidence is used to consider wider questions on the origins, nature and consequences of the early modern phase of globalisation, sometimes referred to as ‘proto-globalisation’. The book contributes to such debates by analysing how these supposedly ‘poorer’ regions of Europe relied on migration as an investment strategy to profit from empire in Asia. Using social network theory and concepts of human capital it examines why the Scots, Irish and Welsh developed markedly different profiles in the Company’s service. Chapters on the administrative elite, army officers and soldiers, the medical corps and private traders demonstrate consistent Scottish over-representation, uneven Irish involvement and consistent Welsh under-representation. Taken together they explore a previously underappreciated cycle of human capital that involved departure to Asia, the creation of colonial profits, and the return back of people and their fortunes to Britain and Ireland. By reconceptualising the origins and the consequences of involvement in the Company, the study will be of interest to historians of early modern Scotland, Ireland, Wales and Britain, the East India Company and the early phases of British imperialism in Asia.
The age of steam was the age of Britain's global maritime dominance, the age of enormous ocean liners and human mastery over the seas. This book charts the diverse and often conflicting interests, itineraries and experiences of commercial and political elites, common seamen and stewardesses, and Islander dock workers and passengers. It tracks the beginnings of routine steamship operations in the 1870s and the consolidation of regional trading relations in the Pacific, through to the years immediately preceding the outbreak of the First World War. Charting the rise of the Union Steam Ship Company of New Zealand (USSCo.) and its extension into the island and transpacific trades, the book examines the ways political leaders in New Zealand and Australia recruited maritime transport operations to support regional agendas. Accounts for continuity and change in crew culture heralded by the transition from sail to steam and the rise of managerial capitalism in the late nineteenth century come next. The imperial maritime labour market was racially diverse. The book also examines the presence of stewardesses and passengers, working and living at the 'coal face' of a new world of transport and trade, and Suva's early years as the Fijian capital. It explores how the savages on the shoreline have in fact become peaceable, non- threatening wharf labourers through the transformative reach of imperial transport, communication and trading networks. Under the terms of the Merchant Shipping Act 1823 (the Lascar Act), Indian sailors were not freely entitled to serve on merchant vessels trading internationally.
Much of the world today is governed by the clock. The project to incorporate the globe within a matrix of hours, minutes and seconds demands recognition as one of the most significant manifestations of Europe's universalising will. This book is an examination of the ways that western-European and specifically British concepts and rituals of time were imposed on other cultures as a fundamental component of colonisation during the nineteenth century. It explores the intimate relationship between the colonisation of time and space in two British settler-colonies and its instrumental role in the exportation of Christianity, capitalism and modernity. Just as the history of colonialism is often written without much reference to time, the history of time is frequently narrated without due reference to colonialism. Analysing colonial constructions of 'Aboriginal time', the book talks about pre-colonial zodiacs that have been said to demonstrate an encyclopedic oral knowledge of the night sky. Temporal control was part of everyday life during the process of colonization. Discipline and the control of human movements were channelled in a temporal as well as a spatial manner. In the colony of Victoria, missions and reserves sought to confine Aboriginal people within an unseen matrix of temporal control, imposing curfews and restrictions which interrupted the regular flow of pre-colonial patterns, rituals and calendars. Christianity had brought civilised conceptions of time to the Xhosa. Reports of Sabbath observance were treated by Britain's humanitarians as official evidence of missionary success in planting the seeds of Christianity, commerce and civilization.
Chocolate remains a mythic product, a symbol both of luxury and of a fantasy world of exoticism, yet also (for many) a workaday requirement providing energy and nutrition. This book concentrates on three key stages of chocolate production in the British empire: growing cocoa beans, manufacturing chocolate from these beans, and the marketing of chocolate products. It begins with the romantic construction of chocolate, redresses the gender imbalance of many existing Rowntree histories and values women's own interpretations of their working lives. The analysis of advertising establishes connections and tensions between the worlds of production and consumption, with an attention to gender and class, and to cultural characteristics. The book tackles imperial histories of chocolate and how British firms, including Rowntree, constructed their own romantic narratives of the 'discovery' and development of chocolate production. It focuses on Nigerian women farmers who have always been active agents in cocoa production, despite having to struggle against the often intersecting structures and ideologies of colonialism, capitalism and patriarchy. The book explores the ways in which Rowntree created and reflected particular understandings of the historic city of York and of empire, through media such as their in-house journal, 'Cocoa Works Magazine'. It provides the oral histories of women factory workers, including that of a Chinese girl, and their experiences of gendered and raced labour in chocolate manufacture.
Liverpool occupies a prominent position in the contemporary popular imagination. In spite of decades of economic decline, urban decay and a name associated by some with poverty and crime, the city's reputation is by no means a negative one. The book is a collection of essays that focuses on the strength of Liverpool's merchant marine, representing both informal and formal empire over centuries. It discusses the interracial relationships in 1950s and 1960s Liverpool to demonstrate that many African and Afro-Caribbean sailors (and others) married or had relationships with white women. Given existing deficiencies in the historiographies of both Liverpool and the British Empire, the book aims to reassess both Liverpool's role within the British imperial system and the impact on the port city of its colonial connections. Liverpool's success has often been attributed to, and marred by, its being the leader in the slave trade after 1750. Napoleonic Wars were a period of great turbulence and difficulty for the Liverpool commercial community. Liverpool is perceived as a diasporic city, however, its ambiguous nineteenth-century identity reflected the tensions of its complex migrant connections. An analysis of Liverpool's business connections with South America reveals its relative commercial decline and the notion of 'gentlemanly capitalism'. The African ethnology collection of National Museums Liverpool's (NML) ethnology collections are displayed in the 'World Cultures' gallery of the World Museum Liverpool, which opened in 2005. Liverpool is perhaps not exceptional, though its networks are notable and striking.
capitalism and industrialisation altering the way people worked and
lived for centuries to come. To seal the bonds within the next
generations, Samuel’s son, the manufacturer and economist Robert
Hyde Greg, married the granddaughter of Nathaniel and Elizabeth
Philips ( née Hibbert) in 1824.
The network of Manchester
families integrated into the
London and early links with the English East India companies
’ with their employers. 18 This recruitment culture ensured that human, cultural and social capital were vital collateral when applying for posts. The EIC existed as a combination of aggressive venture capitalism and apparently archaic social assumptions about gentlemanly honour and character. 19 Its currencies were many, and it traded freely in the human as well as in the monetary forms of wealth. That it did so provided a crucial opportunity to the under-resourced, in venture-capital terms, metropolitan provinces. Here was an organisation receptive to the human and
Underpinned by the idiosyncratic development of racial capitalism in the territory, Rhodesia established a reputation quite distinct from the aristocratic excesses associated with the white highlands of Kenya or the poor whiteism and Afrikaner nationalism that characterised white South Africa. The Rhodesian state attempted to cultivate an image of the settler colony as the British imperial destination for the aspirant and respectable working man and adventurous, yet subservient and family-orientated woman. During settler rule the image of hardy European farmers
Complicating the coloniser: Scottish, Irish and Welsh perspectives on British imperialism in Asia
inclusive English or British-Irish enterprise. As ‘the most impressive overseas manifestation of the alliance between land and finance in the eighteenth century’, the Company exemplifies the gentlemanly capitalism thesis. 53 Yet the extent to which London dominated eighteenth-century British expansion and imperialism is a matter of debate. Cain and Hopkins have been challenged for their excessive concentration upon the metropole and for marginalising the English regions and Ireland and Scotland, not least during the long eighteenth century. 54 One particularly effective