Chapter

The Movement into Redistribution

Henry Phelps Brown

in Egalitarianism and the Generation of Inequality

Published in print November 1988 | ISBN: 9780198286486
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191596773 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198286481.003.0007
 The Movement into Redistribution

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Between the Reform Act of 1832 and the Great Exhibition of 1851, Britain was transformed, and the principles of the people who brought the change about had mostly been developed and received in the eighteenth century. A new thrust towards equality was to be exerted after 1880, but the reformers’ achievement in those two earlier decades was to find means of applying principles to practice as never before. Obstacles that had seemed insuperable declined, gradually at first, but in the end enough to improve the prospects of social betterment; new institutions were designed and established, run by a new type of administrator, and the machinery of redistribution that was mounted in those years continued to be developed in the three decades following. The course of social and economic change pushed the process on through government, against all fear of innovation and centralization, and meanwhile, a new view of mankind and of society was fostering attitudes that were to renew egalitarianism. The five sections of the chapter look at the rise of and later development of administration, the expansion of resources, the new view of society, and Karl Marx and equality.

Keywords: administration; Britain; egalitarianism; equality; government; history; institutions; Karl Marx; redistribution; reform; resources; society

Chapter.  16415 words. 

Subjects: Public Economics

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