Economic Expansion and Informal Empire after 1815
WE must now examine the relationships between Britain and areas outside the bounds of formal empire. A great deal of the controversy on this issue has centred on Britain’s relationships with the Latin American countries so they must be dealt with first. Did the British try to gain economic hegemony through free trade [57: 9–10] or did they simply bargain with others for entry into their market on a basis of equality, scrupulously refusing to use their power to influence their smaller and weaker partners as Platt has argued [146; 148: 308f.]?
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