Building Capitalism (Routledge Revivals)

Historical Change and the Labour Process in the Production of Built Environment

By Linda Clarke

© 2012 – Routledge

316 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415688024
pub: 2012-11-22
Hardback: 9780415687881
pub: 2011-07-26

About the Book

First published in 1992, this Routledge Revival sees the reissue of a truly original exploration of the nature of urbanization and capitalism.

Linda Clarke’s vital work argues that:

  • Urbanization is a product of the social human labour engaged in building as well as a concentration of the labour force.
  • The quality of the labour process determines the development of production.
  • Changes to the built environment reflect changes in the production process and, in particular, the development of wage labour.

To support these arguments, the author identifies a qualitatively new historical stage of capitalist building production involving a significant expansion of wage labour, and hence capital, and the transition from artisan to industrial production.

Linda Clarke draws from a wide range of original material relating to the development of London from the mid-eighteenth to the early nineteenth century to provide a complete description of the development process: materials extraction, roadbuilding, housebuilding, paving, cleansing, etc; profiles of builders and contractors involved, and a picture of the new working class communities, as in Somers Town – their living conditions, population, working environment, and politics.

Table of Contents

Part 1: Theoretical Questions and Considerations 1. Urbanization as a Production Process 2. Transition and Historical Change in the Urbanization Process 3. Stages a Structure or Transition 4. The End of Artisan Production Part 2: Urbanization through Artisan Production: From Brill Farm to Somers Town 5. Eighteenth-Century Building Conditions in and Around London 6. The Early Development of Brill Farm and its surroundings 7. A Breakdown in the Process of Building St. Pancras Part 3: Urbanization Through Contracting 8. The Builder as Contractor 9. A New Stage of Building Production 10. The Capital Expands

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economic History
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Urban & Regional
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Economic Development
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Human Geography