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By Robert W. D. Boyce

Within the aftermath of the 1st international battle British politics have been subordinated to the aim of reconstructing a multilateral alternate and funds procedure. This determination needs to be understood because the results of the strange constitution of British capitalism in which mercantile and monetary task instead of production supplied the middle of wealth of the dominant neighborhood. For a decade, Britain made a sign contribution to the recovery of multilateralism. With the realm at a turning-point in 1928, British coverage remained devoted to reform via multilateral motion, really as soon as the Labour celebration resumed place of work. however the functional influence of coverage used to be the other of that meant. Dogmatic competition to all second-best possible choices helped force all international locations, Britain incorporated, clear of internationalism in the direction of a slim nationalism and fiscal protectionism. The account leads to 1932 while Britain embarked upon an lively imperial coverage whereas the remainder of the realm headed in the direction of one other warfare. utilizing a variety of basic assets, the writer provides an account which integrates the industrial, political and diplomatic occasions of the interval.

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Extra info for British Capitalism at the Crossroads, 1919-1932: A Study in Politics, Economics, and International Relations

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102 The decision on economic internationalism In January 1918 the Ministry of Reconstruction turned to the City for advice on postwar currency and exchange policy. C. Pigou, Professor of Political Economy at Cambridge, and ten international bankers serving as members. Practically all the witnesses who appeared before the committee were likewise from the City, and of the twenty-one submissions received only one, from the FBI, was definably the expression of industrial opinion. Even at this point the FBI's advice differed markedly from that of City authorities.

By the same token industry was also unrepresented until 1928, when Sir Josiah Stamp was elected in order to allay mounting criticism of Bank policy. 66 Until the First World War the Governor and Deputy Governor of the Bank of England were elected from the Court of Directors for a twoyear term virtually on the principle of 'Buggins' turn', without being expected to resign their positions in private firms. This reflected the dominance of London in the international monetary system and the ease with which the Bank managed the flow of funds across the exchanges.

27 The constitution served to establish the party as the progressive force in British politics, but did little to underpin a radical economic strategy. 28 For another, the principle of international working-class solidarity was strengthened by the war and reinforced the usual Cobdenite arguments for free trade. During the 1920s a growing number of party members, particularly from the trade union wing, reacted against the practice of exposing the country to world market forces and pressed for a return to the party's original interventionist objective.

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