an introduction to the industrial history of england

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE INDUSTRIAL HISTORY OF ENGLAND CHAPTER I FORMS OF INDUSTRIAL ORGANIZATION I. Socialists And Industrial History When the German socialist Rodbertus began his studies of the history of industry, it soon became evident that some considerable degree of continuity of develop- Be -nnin g rf ment could be found. Forms of industrial industrial hi- organization appeared in various places which toiy could be arranged in logical sequence; beginning with simple forms and passing with minute gradations to the highly complex forms of modern industrial society. The socialists were profoundly interested in the non-capitalistic forms of organization and in the slow emergence of distinct classes of capitalists and wage-earners. An economic interpretation of history began to develop which was profoundly influenced by the socialists though not confined to them. Many of the features of industrial history that appealed to them were the obvious superficial generalizations that would appeal to any casual investigator. The logical progression of these forms of industrial organization made the schemes particularly attractive to persons with theoretical interests. Generalizations have thus become current in economic writing that are largely due to socialistic writers; they represent, however, a superficial interpretation of history that possesses all the attractions of a plausible and simple account. The views are not obviously distorted by socialistic doctrine, but they are the basis of some unfortunate conclusions and they are so misleading that they cannot serve as a guide to further critical study of industrial problems. The course of industrial history was sketched by thesewriters somewhat as follows. In Greece and Rome, indus- The socialistic trial development was do...
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