The following is an evaluation and comparison of two secondary source journal articles. The articles are 'Interpretations of the Industrial Revolution in Britain: A Methodological Inquiry' by R. M. Hartwell and 'The Industrial Revolution and the Industrious Revolution', By Jan De Vries.
Economic historian R.M. Hartwell wrote this journal article in 1959, it was published in the Journal of Economical History. R. M. Hartwell is one of the most popular historians to write about the Industrial Revolution. The decade in which this article is written shows the view of historians at the time, and this is reflected in Hartwell article. As the title of this article suggest Hartwell sets out to give the reader the interpretations of the Industrial Revolution from all angles. He does this successfully and chooses to use a large number of sources, such as other Historians or Social Commentators, both from the time and a later period.
In the Second section, Hartwell continues by discussing how different historians choose to look at the Industrial Revolution from different perspectives, and that their own beliefs and opinions can bias their interpretation that then can bias what is written. Harwell suggests that some of the disagreements between historians may arise from the fact that they may be trying to compare people from different classes or two different types of jobs, he believes the comparison must compare like for like. Also that peoples sources may be used to suit the theory they are trying to put forward. Hartwell goes on to say that for every opinion about the Industrial Revolution there will be a counter opinion, and that because the Industrial Revolution affected a whole society no two opinions will be the same.
Hartwell continues by saying how some historians believed the industrial revolution was to blame for a decline in morals but Hartwell suggests there is no evidence to prove this. Finally the last section of the article Hartwell then returns again to concentrate on the debate about the Industrial Revolution and how it will continue but change with the times. Hartwell acknowledges how times have changed and people's views and values of what is bad and good has changed along with it, this he suggests may be why people have become less affected by the Industrial Revolution. Hartwell believes that the writer will always be influenced by his own opinion and that there will always be debate in history, and the survival of history itself depends on these different views.
Jan De Vries is also an Economic Historian, his journal article was written much later in 1994, but also published in the Journal of Economic History. De Vries writes his article in a different style by using much less academic writing; he writes using the word 'I', the use of in the first person is very unusual in academic writing; he also uses lots of imaginative language. He describes, “…pruning of a tree allowed saplings long stunted by the ...