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Title: The transformation of regional economic systems : the Yorkshire woollen industry, c.1780-c.1840
Author: Gregory, D. J.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 1981
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This thesis draws upon a theory of structuration to explicate the change from a domestic to a factory system of production in the woollen industry of the West Riding of Yorkshire between c.1780 and c.1840. Alternative modes of explanation are sketched out in Chapter I and used to anticipate the theoretical form of the argument, while Chapter II determines the general relations between the woollen industry and the English space-economy to provide in more substantive terms both context and counterpoint for the detailed regional analyses which make up the body of the thesis. Chapter III reconstructs changes within the domestic labour process at the end of the eighteenth century which combined to make the position of the independent, petty clothier steadily more precarious, and connects these to the early nineteenth-century campaigns in Parliament to secure the political conditions of existence of the economic class relations of the traditional system. The consequences of the failure of these attempts are demonstrated in Chapter IV through an analysis of the effects of the economic crisis of 1810-12, and in particular through a consideration of Luddism in the northern counties. The inability of such protests to halt the advance of industrial capitalism and to prevent the reduction of the petty clothier to the status of dependent outworker or factory hand is traced in Chapter V, which describes the emergence of the factory system and its progressive appropriation of whole sections of the domestic labour process. Again, none of this was suffered in silence: these transformations were bound in to the continuation of struggles both inside and outside Parliament, and while those were now located within the wage-labour market they eventually spilled over onto a wider terrain and culminated in the Chartist battles of the late 1830s. These studies are connected in Chapter VI to claim, more generally, that the ways in which the new structures of domination were instantiated in both the capitalist economy and the capitalist state at the turn of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries entailed a profound 'legitimation crisis' and that this was contested through a series of social practices registered in economy, politics and ideology.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available