Formal and Informal Empire in the 19th Century: From the end of the Napoleonic Wars to the 1880s, British industrial might and British command of the oceans underpinned the 'imperialism of free trade', in which economic interests of various kinds were paramount. In the industrial era, the major non-European empires, notably the Chinese, Japanese and Mughal states, failed to keep pace with this expansion of European influence, and the lecture discusses the reasons for this failure. New European empires emerged following the collapse of the old, and gradually European states found themselves intentionally or otherwise involved in converting economic and trading interests into imperial administration. Existing centres of European settlement and economic penetration, from Canada and South Africa to India and Algeria, generated a further impetus towards imperial expansion, driven by settlers' interests in trade, labour exploitation or security.
Professor Sir Richard J. Evans FBA
Professor Richard J. Evans FBA is Regius
Professor of Modern History and President of Wolfson College at the University
has lectured extensively all over the world at a variety of literary festivals
and events, is widely published and is a frequent contributor to the broadcast
media and the press.
He has been Editor of theJournal
of Contemporary Historysince
1998 and a judge of the Wolfson Literary Award for History since 1993.
His most recent publication was the third volume of his monumental large-scale
history of the Third Reich,The Third Reich at War, which was
published in 2008.
Evans's area of research interest lies predominantly in German history,
especially social and cultural history, since the mid-nineteenth century.
He has worked on movements of emancipation and liberation, including the
feminist movement and the labour movement, on social inequality in the urban
environment, and on the social history of death and disease. His work on
the history of crime has involved examining literary discourses and their
interaction with social models of deviance, both those articulated by the
authorities and those lived by deviants themselves. Since acting as
principal expert witness in the David Irving libel trial before the High Court
in London in 2000, his work has dealt with Holocaust denial and the clash of
epistemologies when history enters the courtroom.