The most remarkable feature of the nineteenth-century writers who praised and defended the mores of industrial society is their insignificance today. We know the age through its critics — Carlyle, Ruskin, Morris — not through its enthusiasts: who now reads Andrew Ure, Harriet Martineau or Herbert Spencer? The critics probably survive to a great extent because they combined their social criticism with intellectual and artistic criticism, and mounted their attack in the language of a traditional and continuing culture. The enthusiasts adopted the language of economics and the infant ‘social sciences’, disciplines which have changed so radically since their time that to rediscover the thread of their argument is to nave to embark on a taxing exploration of archaic economic and social philosophy.
KeywordsCorn Europe Steam Germinate Assimilation
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