chapter  2
16 Pages

1. Germany, the Model Follower-on

Structural Change Agriculture reflects, perhaps more than any other sector, the wide span of regional variations of the German economy, stretching as it does from the south-western and western small-farm regions which showed strong similarities to their advanced neighbours in France and the Netherlands, respectively, to the East-Elbian knightly estates ("Rittergüter") which approximated to the most backward feudal agrarian regions of Eastern Europe. It was to be highly significant for the industrialization process and the general development of modern Germany that the farmer-landlords, the Junkers, of the eastern provinces of Prussia came to dominate the country politically and, after the unification of Germany under Bismarck, extended their power over the whole of an industrialised Reich.