John Hobson argued that the capitalist market drove the imperialistic trend of the late 1800s, as opposed to nationalism.1 Much like colonialism, imperialism is a policy that allows for one country to take control over another, generally by military force. Hobson was writing Imperialism in London just after the Long Depression, one of the worst recessions in history. The depression affected economies worldwide; however, England took the hardest hit. Being in the midst of all the economic failure around him must have prompted Hobson to criticize imperialism.… Read the rest here
Author: The author is John Hobson, a classically educated English economist. Throughout his life, Hobson became known as a critic of Imperialism, to a point where people began to frown upon how open his criticisms were.
Context: This piece was written in 1902, at a time where the British economic system was experiencing a stark downturn. They were no longer the clear superpower in the world, with countries such as the United States and Germany steadily gaining economic and military strength.… Read the rest here
Author: John A. Hobson; English economist and critic of imperialism. Born into upper-middle class family. Hobson was highly educated and associated with several different political groups after moving to London in 1887. He had rather extreme views concerning imperialism and was ultimately outed by the academic community for the overly forward nature of his writing.
Context: 1902; English production begins to be rivaled by Germany, the United States, and Belgium. These states encroach on international markets previously monopolized by Great Britain.… Read the rest here
Author: John Hobson, English economist and English diplomat in southern Africa.
Context: During the middle of an economic depression in England which he attributed to the unsustainability in imperialist expansion.
Language: Language is very direct and highly critical. He was very well educated and the language in the document is not for an uneducated audience.
Audience: For the middle and upper classes mainly, ones who would understand simple to complex economics. Also for all modern economists at the time, especially in England.… Read the rest here
A. John Hobson (1902)
- English economist
- Critic of imperialism
- Wealthy family and well educated
- One of the most famous critiques of the economic bases of imperialism
- Middle of 2nd IR
- Britain had lost its monopoly on the world market
- Intelligent, enlightened, somewhat complex
- Britain’s leaders
- Inform Britain not only that imperialism is unnecessary, but it wastes Britain’s resources on peoples that can never become part of Britain instead of fixing internal problems