Early Globalization and the Economic Development of the United States and Brazil

By John Dewitt | Go to book overview

Chapter 7

Global Economy Relationships between Core and Noncore States

During the nineteenth century Great Britain was an economic superpower, the leading core state of the world economy. Economic self-interest dictated Britain’s goals of maintaining dominance over weaker states and preventing the development of potential rivals. This chapter examines the distinctly different relationships that the United States and Brazil had with Britain and how these associations affected economic development.

The British wanted to obstruct further development of rising economic competitor United States. Because America was an emerging power, however, it had to be handled with caution. Brazil, on the other hand, was a weak state that could be treated like a palooka and pummeled with impunity. A review of events that brought India, China, and Japan into the world economy concludes the chapter to illustrate the influence of core–periphery relationships on development.


GREAT BRITAIN AND BRAZIL

Britain played an active role in the suppression of the Brazilian slave trade. British abolitionists undoubtedly had strong moral reasons for their campaign to stop the abominable commerce in human beings. The British government’s actions against the slave trade, however, were motivated by factors other than moral fervor.

A series of British treaties with Portugal and Brazil called for ending the slave trade. These conventions were para inglês ver (to show the English). Brazil signed agreements to meet British demands without the intention of

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