Free Trade and Imperialism in the Nineteenth Century Term Paper by Master Researcher

Free Trade and Imperialism in the Nineteenth Century
A look at nineteenth century British imperialist policy.
# 38630 | 1,900 words | 2 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Oct 13, 2003 in History (British)

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This paper examines an article by John Gallagher and Ronald Robinson as well as an article by Platt on British imperial policy in the nineteenth century. The paper analyzes both articles and assesses the role of free trade and the conflict between free trade and territorial expansion of the British Empire. The paper reaches the conclusion that there was a continuity in British imperialism that was not interrupted or seriously altered by free trade sentiments at the middle of the century.


From the Paper:

"In 1953 John Gallagher and Ronald Robinson published an article in the Economic History Review that continues to inspire debate. They argued that economic historians had created an artificial division in imperial history because of the delineation of formal--'colonies coloured red on the map'--and informal empire. In contrast, they argued that imperialism was on going both within the formal empire and throughout the informal empire also. They argued that even Marxist analysts of the period of 'New Imperialism'--after 1880 or thereabouts--were overly distracted by the formal empire.
"They argued that a division between periods of formal expansion of the empire should not, indeed could not be divorced from "the innocent and static liberalism [of Free Trade] of the middle of the century." (Gallagher and Robinson, p.2) They argued that mid-Victorian 'indifference' to formal empire and late-Victorian 'enthusiasm' for formal empire was two manifestations of an organic imperialism that was present and active throughout the century despite the rhetoric of Free Trade."

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APA Format

Free Trade and Imperialism in the Nineteenth Century (2003, October 13) Retrieved December 08, 2022, from

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"Free Trade and Imperialism in the Nineteenth Century" 13 October 2003. Web. 08 December. 2022. <>