The Age Of Commerce And IndustryPresentation Transcript
Lecture 3: The Age of Commerce and Industry
Introduction: Prometheus unbound?
Revisionist view of industrialization:
1) scale of technological change
2) population growth
3) growth of commerce
1) The Age of Machinery
Britain’s reputation as first industrial nation rests on 3 factors:
ii) technological innovation
iii) population growth
Does this accurately reflect what we now know about the 18 th century economy?
No industrial take off in the 1780s Estimated rates of growth in Gross National Product for Britain, 1700-1870 (Nicholas Crafts ) National income per capita Period 1.98 1830-1870 0.52 1800-1830 0.17 1760-1800 0.3 1700-60
The age of factories and machinery?
William Blake ‘dark satanic mills’, Jerusalem (1804)
Traditional view =
technological and mechanical innovation transformed economy
craftsmanship replaced by unskilled labour
Steam engine invented 1712, only 1200 in use in Britain 1800
Spinning jenny, spinning mule, powerloom, Jacquard loom = portable and operated by hand
Britain in 1841: only 10% of cotton mills more than a 100 workers
1871: average manufactory less than 10 employees
Big 18 th century factories = state owned, arsenals, dockyards