The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Britainby Roderick Floud
Pub. Date: 01/31/2004
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
A new edition of the leading textbook on the economic history of Britain since industrialisation. Leading historians and economists examine the foundational importance of economic life in modern Britain as well as the close interconnections between economic, social, political and cultural change. Each chapter provides a clear guide to the major controversies in the… See more details below
A new edition of the leading textbook on the economic history of Britain since industrialisation. Leading historians and economists examine the foundational importance of economic life in modern Britain as well as the close interconnections between economic, social, political and cultural change. Each chapter provides a clear guide to the major controversies in the field and students are shown how to connect historical evidence with economic theory and how to apply quantitative methods. Volume 2, on 1870 to the present, tracks the development of the British economy from late nineteenth-century global dominance to its early twenty-first-century position as a mid-sized player in an integrated European economy. The chapters re-examine issues of Britain's relative economic growth and decline over the 'long' twentieth century, setting the British experience within an international context, and benchmark its performance against that of its European and global competitors.
- Cambridge University Press
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- New Edition
- Product dimensions:
- 6.85(w) x 9.72(h) x 1.26(d)
Table of Contents1. Economic growth during the long twentieth century Nicholas Crafts; 2. From empire to Europe: Britain in the world economy Kevin O'Rourke; 3. Population, migration and labour supply Tim Hatton; 4. Health and welfare Bernard Harris; 5. Income and living standards Ian Gazeley; 6. Technology, innovation and economic growth Tom Nicholas; 7. Consumption and affluence Avner Offer; 8. Cycles and depressions Matthias Morys; 9. The City and the corporate economy David Chambers; 10. Armaments and the economy Jari Eloranta; 11. The deindustrial revolution: the rise and fall of UK manufacturing, 1870–2010 Michael Kitson and Jonathan Michie; 12. The rise of the service sector Steve Broadberry; 13. The household economy Peter Scott; 14. Growth of the public sector Bob Millward; 15. Soft power: the media industries Gerben Bakker; 16. Sterling and monetary policy Catherine Schenk; 17. Economic policy and management Roger Middleton; 18. Economic ideas and ideology Roger Backhouse and Keith Tribe.
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Roderick Floud is Vice-Chancellor of London Metropolitan University, and Paul Johnson is Professor of Economic History at the London School of Economics, so it is no surprise that this is a very safe book. There are 14 contributors from Britain and one each from Canada, Japan and the USA. The first chapter is on the wartime economy. Each of the other 14 looks at an aspect of the economy from 1945 to 2000 - growth, manufacturing, state ownership of industry, education, monetary policy, financial services, economic policy, living standards, services, the EU's impact, technology, regional policy, fiscal policy and industrial relations. It is clear, even from this conventional set of readings, how destructive Thatcherism has been. Between 1949 and 1973, the economy grew by 3% a year; between 1973 and 2000, by only 2.3% a year. Britain has had the biggest deindustrialisation of any advanced industrial nation, because the ruling class has refused to invest in manufacturing. Thatcher's liberalisation of finance capital forced firms to maximise their financial returns at the expense of industrial investment. Thatcher cut government R&D, supposedly to boost private R&D and investment, but actually to cut them both. Britain has for decades underinvested in education and training. By contrast, Germany has comprehensive post-16 vocational training and extended its industrial apprenticeship system into services. Thatcher embraced the EU in order to promote the free market, and the EU duly gave us low growth and high unemployment. Her attack on trade unions caused income inequalities to grow: the richest 1%'s share of total income went from 5% in 1980 to 10% in 1998. The book ignores what a far more gifted writer noted over a century ago: "increasing concentration of wealth, rapid elimination of small and medium-sized enterprises, progressive limitation of competition, incessant technological progress accompanied by an ever-growing importance of fixed capital, and last but not least the undiminishing amplitude of recurrent business cycles."