Technology and Industrialisation: Historical Case Studies and International Perspectives, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Technology and Industrialisation

Historical Case Studies and International Perspectives, 1st Edition

By Ian Inkster


312 pages

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Hardback: 9780860787716
pub: 1998-08-28

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These thirteen essays embrace case studies of Britain, Japan, Europe, China, India and Australasia and cover a period from circa 1700 to the present day. The author’s main intention is to illustrate a ’political economy' approach to industrial and technological history, to demonstrate the relations between technical and instutitional transformations, and to bring the history of technology into a wide historical perspective.


’…this collection testifies to the breadth of Inkster’s historical interests and the value of his profoundly comparative, institutionalist approach.’ Isis, Vol. 91, No.1 'One cannot read Inkster’s works without gaining an appreciation for the depth of his scholarship, new insights into the processes of industrialization and technology transfer, and a much more global view of these processes.' Industrial Archeology, vol. 26, no.2

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction: The wealth of some nations; Discoveries, inventions and industrial revolutions: on the varying contributions of technologies and institutions from an international historical perspective; Culture, action and institutions: on exploring the historical economic successes of England and Japan; Scientific enterprise and the colonial ’model’: observations on Australian experience in historical context; Support for the scientific enterprise, 1850-1900; Intellectual dependency and the sources of invention: Britain and the Australian technological system in the 19th century; Meiji economic development in perspective: revisionist comments upon the Industrial Revolution in Japan; Science, technology and economic development: Japanese historical experience in context; Catching up and hanging on: the formation of Science in Japan; The other side of Meiji: conflict and conflict management; Prometheus bound: technology and industrialization in Japan, China and India prior to 1914 - a political approach; Colonial and neo-colonial transfers of technology: perspectives on India before 1914; Into the 20th century: patterns in the relations between science, technology and the state during the early industrialisation process; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

For further information about contributing to the series please contact Michael Greenwood at

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General