chapter
19 Pages

The Economic World

In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, Western Europe, and especially Great Britain, was moving into an entirely new social and economic system which was first labeled "Industrialism" by Thomas Carlyle in 1833. The importance and magnitude of this development, which is still going on, can hardly be exaggerated. Its significance and scope can only be compared to the Agricultural Revolution of ten thousand years ago, when man began to move from hunting-gathering bands into settled communities tilling the land. It is this immense change in economic-social conditions that supplied the bricks and mortar, the reality behind the intellectual construction of the new economic world depicted by the political economy of the time. Many of John Stuart Mill's ideas of population, wages, rent, and so on, came from David Ricardo. Ricardo was more than just a theorist for James Mill. The two men were first brought together as a result of Mill's essay of 1808, "Commerce Defended".