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140 letters in canada 2002 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 least, Island miners were much more conservative than earlier writing has suggested. British miners on Vancouver Island protested their failure to meet expectations >not as a radical, unstable, unmarried industrial proletariate , not even as an inherently anti-Asian white community,= but rather as >family men with long-term interests to protect ... Skills, custom, and security were their principal ABritish@ watchwords, not rebellious racism, revolution, and socialism.= Belshaw focuses on the most privileged members of coal mining society on Vancouver Island and thus leaves more to be said about the less skilled members of the workforce, many of whom were Chinese, and about women, about whom the census manuscripts for the years 1881, 1891, and 1901 will yield additional insight. New material published or made available since the mid-1990s seems underused: comparisons to my study of class and status in Vancouver, fuller reference to Helen Brown=s conclusions about schooling in Nanaimo, and a more comprehensive analysis of the 1901 manuscript census for Vancouver Island mining communities come to mind. In addition, reference to British studies of the role that paternalism and deference played in leading working people in factory communities to respond conservatively to employers seems curiously absent. Quibbles aside, however, Colonization and Community contributes substantially to our understanding of settler society in nineteenth-century British Columbia. Statistically based profiles of whole communites in British Columbia are rare. Belshaw=s conclusion that the immigration experience in British Columbia should be viewed as a recalibration (through adaptation to local circumstances) rather than as a simplification (and thus replication) of the home society is an important insight for all immigrant studies. Finally, his observations about working-class politics will be controversial, but are important, and merit further investigation. (ROBERT MCDONALD) Janice Gross Stein. The Cult of Efficiency Anansi 2001. xvi, 295. $18.95 Janice Stein has excelled as a scholar and commentator on international relations. In her insightful Massey Lectures, which are published in The Cult of Efficiency, she focuses on different conceptions of efficiency and their relation to the evolving roles of the state. She distinguishes between productive efficiency, understood as the maximization of production, and utilitarian efficiency, understood as the realization of internal values. She then relates the increasing acceptance of utilitarian efficiency to an emerging >culture of choice= and an increased emphasis on individualism. She writes: >Beneath the surface of conversation about efficiency is a deeper debate about the intrinsic value of choice. Choice has become a value and is increasingly construed as a right.= The idea of the culture of choice put forth humanities 141 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 by Stein has its roots in economic utilitarian thinking dating back to Jeremy Bentham and Adam Smith, and significantly influences current debate on the issue of the effective provision of public goods. The central focus of Stein=s book is the changing role of the state, characterized primarily by a shift from the direct provision of goods to the financing and regulation of the production of goods by private actors. She writes: >The post-industrial state is increasingly a partner and contractor, working jointly with other institutions B private as well as public B to set the terms on which others deliver public goods.= The post-industrial state, as outlined by Stein, rejects both monopolistic control by the government and complete dominance by the private market in the provision of public goods. Stein illustrates the changing role of the state in extensive discussions of changes in the health care and educational systems. She primarily focuses on what she terms >public markets,= or what might be called >government financed and regulated goods,= which arise out of the often complementary inefficiencies of both states and markets. Stein isolates a number of major forces that underlie the changing economic roles of the state B particularly the creation of public markets or government-financed goods. Foremost among these forces are the economic inefficiencies and negative societal impacts of both monopolistic state control and unfettered market dominance. She further notes that government regulation can control the social shortcomings of the...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 140-142
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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