Yukio TAKEUCHI, Theories of imperialism and empire: a hundred years’ controversy
The publication of J. A. Hobson’s Imperialism: a study in 1902 initiated the analysis of imperialism. Hobson’s work was followed by Lenin’s Imperialism (1917), and together they formed what came to be known as the Hobson-Lenin thesis, proposing that imperialism at the turn of the 20th century was caused by export of capital. There arose a century-long controversy about whether this interpretation, focused on economics, was correct: this question became the main focus for historians of imperialism. There were, however, works by historians of empire like J. Seeley, C. Dilke and J. Froude from the late 19th century, followed by Whig imperial historians, all of whom presented essentially non-economic interpretations. Most of the time assessments of the history of imperialism and empire were so conflicting and contradictory that arguments were rarely conclusive. A breakthrough was needed, and it came with Robinson and Gallagher’s Imperialism of free trade and Empire of gentlemanly capitalism by Cain and Hopkins. These works presented a more flexible economic interpretation. According to Cain and Hopkins, Hobson was not an economic determinist, but a great organizer who combined theories of empire and imperialism. This paper reviews the interpretations of imperialism and empire over a hundred years.
Masahiro HIRATA, Formation and development of imperial historiography—some aspects of culture and ideology
This article begins with a review of the background, major points and perspectives in the important Studies in imperialism series, edited by John MacKenzie and Andrew Thompson and published in 1984 by the Manchester University Press. This series stressed cultural aspects of empire and imperialism.
The paper then surveys the introduction of new approaches including 'postcolonial', 'new imperial history', and the 'imperial turn', which influenced imperial historiography; the paper then turns to critical perspectives on these approaches, including David Cannadine’s Ornamentalism.
The third section of the paper considers 'historiography of a four nations approach to the history of the British Empire' which emerged from reconsidering the 'historiography of victimhood on Celtic peripheries', and points out the importance of the historical relationships between the British Empire and Ireland, Scotland, Wales and, in particular, England.
Finally the paper discusses the role of ideas and ideologies as non-economic factors, using the approach of imperial intellectual history which David Armitage promoted in his The ideological origins of the British Empire and The declaration of independence: a global history.
Mahito TAKEUCHI, Evangelicalism and British liberal imperialism
This article analyses the relationship between evangelicalism and British liberal imperialism. Evangelicalism was a popular Protestant movement that emerged from the Evangelical Revival in Britain and the United States from the 1730s onwards. Evangelicalism challenged the gentlemanly ideal of the High Church and the Broad Church, both of which regarded society as an organism composed of discrete parts. This article demonstrates that evangelicalism had the ideological power to transform human beings into ‘self-acting machines’ or industrious members of the labour force. After the 1790s evangelicalism created the modern missionary movement, which furnished the ‘moral machinery’ for the promotion of civilisation and legitimate commerce. In this way it not only placed a restraint on capitalist greed but it also demanded liberal humanitarian interventions around the world. This article argues that it is necessary to examine evangelicalism in detail to understand British liberal imperialism and that the prevailing evangelical ideology was the main reason why the gentlemanly elite attempted a liberal shift of imperial policy in the nineteenth century.
Hitomi HOHRI, Productivity and profitability implications of integrating cotton spinning and weaving: the case of prewar Japan
In prewar Japan the cotton weaving industry was composed of two groups of firms. Some firms specialized in weaving and others integrated spinning and weaving. The latter had a substantial share in cotton cloth production, especially that for export. Many cotton spinning firms invested in weaving plants to integrate weaving. This paper investigates the purpose of vertical integration by cotton spinning firms, and examines its implications for productivity and profitability. We found that managers of integrated firms regarded their weaving departments as an important source of profit, not a vent for redundant cotton yarns. The high profitability of the weaving business reflected its higher labor productivity, which in turn was mainly due to higher capital-labor ratio.
Kazuyasu HAYASHI，The wet-rice farming method described in Chiminyaoshu: on the interpretation of the word suiyi
In Chiminyaoshu, the word suiyi (changing the planting of farmland yearly) describes wet-rice farming. Previous researchers have interpreted the Chiminyaoshu’s description of this method as meaning leaving a paddy field fallow, or transforming what was previously a paddy field into farmland the following year. However, several aspects of these interpretations remain questionable.
In this paper, I provide a new interpretation of wet-rice farming, or suiyi, described in Chiminyaoshu, and argue that it refers to research into agriculture. The results of this analysis are as follows: first, wet-rice farming, or suiyi, was designed primarily for the Si River valley in Shandong. Second, it occurred upstream, where springs joined to form the river’s source. Third, the word suiyi can mean transforming what was previously a paddy field into farmland the following year. Fourth, thus suiyi was designed to conserve agricultural water and prevent a drought; to prevent a leak of water from damaging the area surrounding a paddy field; and to improve the efficiency of farmland usage. Fifth, this type of farming is an agricultural method modified and crafted specifically to suit the local climate of Shandong.
Osamu YANAGISAWA, The wartime Nazi policy on the rationalization of the German small business sector
The German small businessmen in the field of “handicraft (Handwerk)” supported the movement of the Nazi party that had as one of its slogans protecting the “middle classes (Mittelstand)”. Historians have long discussed whether during the Third Reich the National Socialists in power supported or neglected the interests of handicraft industry. While H. Winkler asserted that the Nazi regime regarded German handicraft as “dispensable”, A. v. Saldern and F. McKitrick pointed out the importance of the rationalization measures with regard to small businesses undertaken by the Nazi government as part of the war economy, though they did not deeply investigate the policy itself. This article analyzes the process by which these measures to rationalize the handicraft industry were introduced by the Nazi government from the Four Year Plan to the end of the WWII. It investigates also the reaction of small businessmen against the measures which shut down ineffective small firms, insisting on the principle of Nazism for the “Mittelstand”. The Nazi policy on the rationalization measures of the small business sector was limited to a few handicrafts and therefore did not as have the impact Saldern and McKitrick presumed.
Satoshi TSUJIMOTO, ‘Scum of the earth’? Common soldiers and their families in eighteenth-century Britain
This essay provides a detailed picture of eighteenth-century British soldiers and their families, a topic which remains unexplored despite the recent rise of ‘new military history’. Through the close study of the settlement examinations of three English parishes (St. Martin in the Fields in Westminster, Chelsea in Middlesex and Bradford on Avon in Wiltshire), which contain nearly 600 depositions with regard to soldiers, the essay examines their civil occupations, literacy, rented property and lives after retirement. It also investigates the experiences of their wives and partners. The statistical analysis of the data indicates that the majority of both soldiers and their wives/partners were ordinary plebeians who had, at the time of enlistment, been following a typical course of life. Most of them entered the army by their own choice according to their respective social and economic conditions. These findings challenge the traditional view that the eighteenth-century army was the ‘scum of the earth’, full of criminals, vagabonds and prostitutes. In fact, there was strong homogeneity between the military and civilian society, which was maintained by an incessant flow of people. These grassroots links and human mobility were important factors enabling the eighteenth-century British state to secure military manpower on an unprecedented scale without recourse to conscription.