Liz Nelson ■ Imperial inequalities: states, empires, taxation & reparations: online conference
Online conference: 3 and 4 December 2020 – Register here
Co-organised with Gurminder K Bhambra, University of Sussex and Julia McClure, University of Glasgow, also based on a forthcoming book Imperial Inequalities: Taxation and Welfare across European Empires
In previous centuries European countries exercised the ‘aggressive extension’ of their authority. Their political interests extracted value and hardwired systems, culture and law to ‘lock’ colonised countries into debt and fiscal dependency. More recent decades, during ‘decolonisation’, saw the perfecting of this imperialist authority leaving a legacy of fiscal indenture.
Today defenders of imperialist systems – multinational companies and wealthy individuals – continue to exploit their powerful advantage leaving states impoverished and often democratically weak.
This conference will highlight the genesis of inequalities within countries and between countries. And in examining this, legacy contributors will explore directions for reparation and reprogramming global tax law and policy.
Questions we’ll be exploring:
- To what extent has the European project of public expenditure on welfare been made possible by imperial extraction?
- What role has taxation and welfare played in creating imperial inequalities? Do these challenge any pre-established theories about pathways to global inequality?
- What role has been played by promoting dependent territories as ‘tax havens’, in the more recent period of extraction, and how has this damaged those territories as well as others?
- How do tax laws, which can themselves be understood as having imperial legacies, continue to shape inequality trends?
- What sort of reparations could conceivably address the scale of damage created from imperial extraction, and how can taxes be collected and redistributed to begin to mitigate the economic damage created?
- How can we move reparations policy up the international political agenda and gain political momentum to move reparations forward?
Read more and register here
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