Why did the Industrial Revolution come to England?

Michael H. Hart’s Understanding Human History is an objectionable book in a variety of regards, but it is another attempt to explain the broad sweep of human history using the concept of IQ.  Let’s see what Hart says (pp.365-6) about why the Industrial Revolution came to England:

1. England had a high average IQ

2. England had a relatively high population (compared say to the Nordic countries)

3. England did not have slavery

4. England had intellectual ferment

5. Colonies added to the intellectual ferment of England

6. Unlike Germany or Italy, England was not politically fragmented

7. England had abundant iron ore and coal

8. England had relatively secure property rights

Hart stresses that in Europe only England had all these factors operating in its favor.  For our purposes, Hart’s more pluralistic explanation is testament to how large a role the Malthusian model plays in Greg Clark’s book.


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