Two Views of the British Industrial Revolution
NBER Historical Working Paper No. 81
There are two views of the British Industrial Revolution in the literature today. The more traditional description, represented by the views of Ashton and Landes, sees the Industrial Revolution as a broad change in the British economy and society. This broad view of the Industrial Revolution has been challenged by Crafts and Harley who see the Industrial Revolution as a much narrower phenomenon, as the result of technical change in a few industries. This paper presents a test of these views using the Ricardian model of international trade with many goods. British trade data are used to implement the test and discriminate between the two views of the Industrial Revolution.
Published: Economic Hist.57 #1 (March,1997): pp. 63-82