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A Marxist reappraisal of Australian capitalism : the rise of Anglo-Colonial finance capital in New South Wales and Victoria, 1830-1890

Wells, Andrew David

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This thesis investigates aspects of the formation and evolution of capitalism in colonial New South Wales. Four principal themes are addressed throughout the discussion: first, the role of British imperialism in establishing and shaping colonial capitalism; second, the role of the British and colonial states in expanding commodity relations; third, the dominant areas and agents involved in capital accumulation, and last, the nature of the class relations and property connections that...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorWells, Andrew David
dc.date.accessioned2017-07-28T05:43:09Z
dc.date.available2017-07-28T05:43:09Z
dc.date.copyright1985
dc.identifier.otherb1573277
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/121712
dc.description.abstractThis thesis investigates aspects of the formation and evolution of capitalism in colonial New South Wales. Four principal themes are addressed throughout the discussion: first, the role of British imperialism in establishing and shaping colonial capitalism; second, the role of the British and colonial states in expanding commodity relations; third, the dominant areas and agents involved in capital accumulation, and last, the nature of the class relations and property connections that underpinned these processes. The structure and dynamics of class relations, especially the relations of production, are both the premise and conclusion of this study. The approach adopted to realise these objects is both theoretical and empirical. The study proceeds through three major parts. The first part is a critical investigation of the historiography pertinent to my principal themes and the specification of the problems discussed in the subsequent parts. Here, the rudiments of marxist historiography are introduced and a sustained critical discussion of Australian economic historiography is presented. By the close of Part One, the approach to be pursued, the themes to be investigated, the departures from non-marxist historiography and the sequence of empirical analyses are made explicit. Part Two of the thesis is concerned with the formation of colonial capitalism. Capitalism depends on the commodification of economic relations: thus this process of commodification is examined in the context of the land, labour and capital markets. Because the initial process of securing capitalist relations of production is as much political as economic, and consequently as much imperial as colonial, the forms of political or state power are discussed. The dominant relations of production before 1860 are defined as ascendant, though contradictory, Anglo-colonial merchant capital. Part Three investigates three dimensions of colonial capitalist development. These investigations pre-suppose the dominance of commodity relations and pursue their intensification and expansion into colonial landed property, the transformation of colonial pastoralism and the forms and directions of public economic activity. In all these cases the focus remains on the four major themes identified above. Part Three closes with an analysis of dominant class relations, a demonstration of the fundamental argument advanced throughout the thesis concerning the prominence that should be given to Anglo-colonial finance capital. Between 1860 and 1890 the major economic relations and class structure were shaped by Anglo-colonial finance capital. The thesis concludes with an assessment of the implications of this study for Australian historiography, including marxist historiography, and indicates possible directions for future investigations.
dc.format.extentix, 475 leaves
dc.language.isoen
dc.subject.lcshCapitalism HistoryAustralia
dc.subject.lcshMarxian economics
dc.subject.lcshAustralia Economic conditions History
dc.titleA Marxist reappraisal of Australian capitalism : the rise of Anglo-Colonial finance capital in New South Wales and Victoria, 1830-1890
dc.typeThesis (PhD)
local.contributor.supervisorButlin, Noel
local.contributor.supervisorFry, Eric
local.contributor.supervisorMaddock, Rod
dcterms.valid1985
local.description.notesThis thesis has been made available through exception 200AB to the Copyright Act.
local.type.degreeDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.date.issued1985
local.contributor.affiliationResearch School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University
local.identifier.doi10.25911/5d6e4f8886abc
dc.date.updated2017-07-08T23:36:27Z
local.identifier.proquestYes
local.mintdoimint
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