Chapter

The Condition of England, 1770–1870

P. S. Atiyah

in The Rise and Fall of Freedom of Contract

Published in print November 1985 | ISBN: 9780198255277
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191681578 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198255277.003.0008
The Condition of England, 1770–1870

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This chapter examines changes in the legal, social, and economic conditions in England during the period from 1770 to 1870 and its implications for the idea of freedom of contract. There are two versions of English history during this period. The popular version suggests that greedy factory owners and capitalists exploited working classes by overworking and underpaying them and that this culture operated within the framework of a legal and political system which favoured the new industrialists. The other version holds that vast new wealth was created by the enterprise, skill, and resourcefulness of the entrepreneurs of the Industrial Revolution.

Keywords: freedom of contract; legal condition; social condition; economic condition; England; political system; industrialists; Industrial Revolution

Chapter.  9233 words. 

Subjects: Civil Law

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