Imperial Inequalities takes Western European empires, and their legacies, as the explicit starting point for discussion. It addresses the institutional and fiscal processes involved in the modes of extraction, that is, taxation, and hierarchies of welfare distribution across Europe’s global empires. It looks at the ways in which particularities of economic governance across European empires have shaped forms of inequality in the present and their ongoing implications for contemporary political economy. Specifically, it examines the ways in which European empires mobilised forms of taxation across the territories they governed and addresses how this was understood, both in the metropole and the imperial hinterlands. The volume further addresses the different forms of welfare provided within the imperial polity in terms of who contributed, who had access, and how this was differentiated across its broader reaches. The relationship between taxation and welfare can be regarded as central to the dynamics of modern nation-states, yet the role of imperialism has rarely been addressed. Nor has the relationship been discussed within the literature addressing issues of economic governance across imperial domains. The volume culminates by looking at the various taxation regimes in operation in different European empires and how their postcolonial legacies continue to shape our world. In sum, the volume provides historical insights into the shaping of structures of inequality through an examination of the complex interplay between forms of extraction and differential redistribution which continue to have repercussions in the present.
Taxpayers, taxation, and expenditure in Sierra Leone, c. 1890s to 1937
All empires governed different
people differently. Through the process of incorporating new
territories and peoples into the overarching structure of empire,
European powers deliberately maintained and exacerbated diversity
and inequalities. 1
Fiscal history is a revealing lens through which to examine this
phenomenon. In a frequently quoted phrase, the fiscal sociologist
Rudolf Goldscheid described fiscal history as revealing the
‘skeleton of the state’. 2 Who were the colonial taxpayers
This book arose out of a friendship between a political philosopher and an
economic sociologist, and their recognition of an urgent political need to
address the extreme inequalities of wealth and power in contemporary
societies. The book provides a new analysis of what generates inequalities
in rights to income, property and public goods in contemporary societies. It
claims to move beyond Marx, both in its analysis of inequality and exploitation,
and in its concept of just distribution. In order to do so, it critiques Marx’s
foundational Labour Theory of Value and its closed-circuit conception of the
economy. It points to the major historical transformations that create
educational and knowledge inequalities, inequalities in rights to public goods
that combine with those to private wealth. In two historical chapters, it argues
that industrial capitalism introduced new forms of coerced labour in the
metropolis alongside a huge expansion of slavery and indentured labour in the
New World, with forms of bonded labour lasting well into the twentieth century.
Only political struggles, rather than any economic logic of capitalism, achieved
less punitive forms of employment. It is argued that these were only steps along
a long road to challenge asymmetries of economic power and to realise just
distribution of the wealth created in society.
With race as a central theme, this book presents racial stratification as the underlying system which accounts for the difference in outcomes of Whites and Blacks in the labour market. Critical race theory (CRT) is employed to discuss the operation, research, maintenance and impact of racial stratification. The power of this book is the innovative use of a stratification framework to expose the pervasiveness of racial inequality in the labour market. It teaches readers how to use CRT to investigate the racial hierarchy and it provides a replicable framework to identify the racial order based on insight from the Irish case. There is a four-stage framework in the book which helps readers understand how migrants navigate the labour market from the point of migration to labour participation. The book also highlights minority agency and how migrants respond to their marginality. The examples of how social acceptance can be applied in managing difference in the workplace are an added bonus for those interested in diversity and inclusion. This book is the first of its kind in Ireland and across Europe to present inequality, racism and discrimination in the labour market from a racial stratification perspective. While this book is based on Irish data, the CRT theoretical approach, as well as its insight into migrant perspectives, poses a strong appeal to scholars of sociology, social justice, politics, intercultural communication and economics with interest in race and ethnicity, critical whiteness and migration. It is a timely contribution to CRT which offers scholars a method to conduct empirical study of racial stratification across different countries bypassing the over-reliance on secondary data. It will also appeal to countries and scholars examining causal racism and how it shapes racial inequality.
Defying this convention, Brototi moved to Calcutta,
India, to pursue a degree in economics, because she wanted to
understand and address the socioeconomic inequalities she saw in her
country. Straight away she became uncomfortable with what she was
being taught without yet understanding why. Here we turn to explore
the source of that discomfort, which so many economics students
minorities; and cultural change left them behind in terms of liberal and cosmopolitan progress on gender, race, and sexual values.
This chapter builds on the work of Gurminder Bhambra and Robbie Shilliam to show how the ‘left behind’ discourse emerged from the shifting meaning of inequality.
In the pre-crash years of never-ending boom, income and wealth inequality could be justified as the legitimate outcome of meritocratic competition. The austerity period was legitimated by a more extreme of this
neighbourhood in the case of Kensington. In both examples, the reputation of these urban spaces to some extent obscures a recognition of difference, which we explore by digging under the surface of their popular images. Both unravel contingencies and peculiarities that provide a re-balancing of mainstream narratives, ultimately highlighting the situated nature of spatial inequalities.
Peaks and troughs in Kensington
Among world cities, London stands out for its high level of economic inequality, due in particular to the growing influx
Proposal #18: fight economic inequality and introduce a universal basic income
On Wednesday, 20 December 2017, the American House of Representatives voted on a new tax bill, which gave companies a massive permanent tax break and temporary tax breaks to individuals. On the same day, the bill was hailed by Trump in a tweet with the text: “We are delivering HISTORIC TAX RELIEF for the American people.” The tweet was accompanied by a picture of a Christmas present box. When the box opened the text “TAX CUTS for CHRISTMAS” appeared. The American president was
Marco Oberti and Edmond Préteceille
Urban segregation, inequalities
and local welfare: the challenges of
The central argument of this chapter is twofold: the transformation of
social structures and that of welfare-state regimes have to be considered
together; urban inequalities and segregation are crucial in relating these two
processes. The first part discusses the relevance of social class analysis in the
face of the fragmentation produced by changing work relations, the growth
of the service sector, the expansion of the middle classes
modern reality of urban American life; television was the cultural site of exchange for a more-than-Dickensian sociological imagination. 5
The Wire’s exploration of sociological themes is truly exceptional. Indeed, I do not hesitate to say that it has done more to enhance our understandings of the challenges of urban life and urban inequality than any other media event or scholarly publication, including studies by social scientists … The Wire develops morally complex characters on each side of the law, and with its scrupulous exploration of the inner workings of