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Iron, Steam & Money: The Making of the Industrial Revolution


Iron, Steam & Money: The Making of the Industrial Revolution

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    Available in PDF Format | Iron, Steam & Money: The Making of the Industrial Revolution.pdf | English
    Roger Osborne(Author)
In late eighteenth-century Britain a handful of men brought about the greatest transformation in human history. Inventors, industrialists and entrepreneurs ushered in the age of powered machinery and the factory, and thereby changed the whole of human society, bringing into being new methods of social and economic organisation, new social classes, and new political forces. The Industrial Revolution also dramatically altered humanity's relation to the natural world and embedded the belief that change, not stasis, is the necessary backdrop for human existence.

Iron, Steam and Money tells the thrilling story of those few decades, the moments of inspiration, the rivalries, skulduggery and death threats, and the tireless perseverance of the visionaries who made it all happen. Richard Arkwright, James Watt, Richard Trevithick and Josiah Wedgwood are among the giants whose achievements and tragedies fill these pages. In this authoritative study Roger Osborne also shows how and why the revolution happened, revealing pre-industrial Britain as a surprisingly affluent society, with wealth spread widely through the population, and with craft industries in every town, village and front parlour. The combination of disposable income, widespread demand for industrial goods, and a generation of time-served artisans created the unique conditions that propelled humanity into the modern world.

The industrial revolution was arguably the most important episode in modern human history; Iron, Steam and Money reminds us of its central role, while showing the extraordinary excitement of those tumultuous decades.

"Ably handling a mass of material, Osborne explores both the technological side of his subject and its human aspect" (Christopher Smith UK Regional Press Syndication)"Osborne fires [the Industrial Revolution] up with great gusto" (Iain Finlayson The Times)"Detailed and scholarly" (Steve Craggs UK Regional Press Syndication)"A truly rattling good yarn" (Jonathan Glancey Country Life)"Detailed and scholarly" (UK Regional Press Syndication)

2.5 (10294)
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Book details

  • PDF | 400 pages
  • Roger Osborne(Author)
  • Bodley Head (23 May 2013)
  • English
  • 10
  • History
Read online or download a free book: Iron, Steam & Money: The Making of the Industrial Revolution

Review Text

  • By Tony Scott on 15 November 2015

    A very clear and concise account of the British Industrial Revolution, recommended for all interested in the subject. The book is written in short chapters, enabling the reader to study at their own pace.

  • By A. Newton on 16 January 2014

    If you are looking for a combination of lucid accounts of the most important technological and organisational developments of the industrial revolution with clear-sighted analysis of the macro-economics of why it happened in 18th-century Britain, this is the book for you. The book also examines the contribution of prominent individuals in the context of the world in which they operated and considers both the benefits and the human costs for the people at large. It is particularly well written and easy to read given the complexity of some of the subject matter. The idea that Britain's high wages were a key factor in rapid economic growth and stimulated both demand and innovation might be a useful reflection for modern policy makers.

  • By Duncan Harvey on 21 August 2013

    This is a terrific read which tells of the the effective invention of a perpetual motion machine - the inventive modern industrial economy - and the cycle of continuous innovation which commenced in the mid 18th century and has carried on to the present day. Read this book and you really will appreciate how the Newcomen Engine has led to the iPhone.The book explains how key technological breakthroughs such as Abraham Darby's coke fuelled Blast Furnace led to increased demand for coal, which led to deeper mines, which led to a need for pumping equipment, which led to the Newcomen Engine, which led to the genius of James Watt, which led to a need for rotary power which led to factories being liberated from water supplies, and so on and so forth.Combine this with the shift from a wool economy to a cotton economy - made entirely possible by the Flying Shuttle, the Spinning Jenny, the Mule and you can see how the world changed.I couldnt put this book down!

  • By I. H. Roblin on 2 February 2017

    A clear, articulate and concise analysis of the factors that contributed to the enormous technical innovations and productivity gains witnessed from 1700 to 1870. Energy and transport (eg railways/canals) considerations are considered alongside analyses of specific industries such as cotton and iron-making (a light exposition of the scientific concepts underlying each innovation is invaluable and interesting). In addition, a heavily summarised chapter on provision of finance for industrial investment highlights the fact that financial development was crucial to kick-start the capitalism we know today.Post-BREXIT, lessons can be learned from this excellent book. We need to innovate again and develop export markets, with free trade.

  • By p j darlington on 10 August 2014

    This book is a really enjoyable and interesting overview of the industrial revolution. The author has given the book real good pace with its relatively short chapter format and felt more like a discussion about the industrial revolution without getting bogged down in over technical descriptions. The book also leads nicely to a conclusion rather than a dry chronological format and makes points that are relevant in the modern world.

  • By Heidi Brandshaug on 26 February 2014

    I am using this book for my essay writing at the university college in Norway. The topic for my essay is The industrial revolution and the British Empire and the connections between them. I am also looking into the genious and timeless work of engineer Isambard Brunel.The book provides the reader with lots of interesting details abiut the industrial revolution. It is also beautifully illustrated with black and white drawings and pictures and is a plesure to read!

  • By Paul May on 25 October 2014

    A very readable, well-written, and well researched account of the Industrial Revolution.

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