This talk explores the emergence of modern offshore tax havens as a way to reopen the history of the decades ca. 1920s-1980s. During these decades an archipelago of distinct legal spaces appeared in a world otherwise increasingly dominated by more sizable nation-states. Tax havens were particularly important among these spaces, reaching from the Channel Islands, Monaco, and Luxembourg to the Bahamas, Panama, and Singapore, among many others. The talk asks why tax havens in particular expanded significantly between 1945 and 1965, and points to decolonization and colonial systems of taxation as one answer. It thus sheds light on a crucial period during which much of today’s tax avoidance industry got off the ground, with lasting implications for the rise of inequality in Europe and North America.
Vanessa Ogle is Associate Professor of modern European History at the University of California – Berkeley. She received her doctorate at Harvard in 2011.
April 17, 2019 | 12:00 PM
Free and open to the public
Humanities Building 1, Room 210
University of California, Santa Cruz