The Struggle for Market Power: Industrial Relations in the British Coal Industry, 1800-1840

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During the Industrial Revolution, class relations were defined largely through the struggle to control the terms of exchange in the market. Integrating aspects of economic and social history as well as industrial sociology, this book examines the sources of the perception of the market on the part of both capital and labour and the elaboration of their alternative market ideologies. Of particular import is the argument that working-class culture expressed a fundamental acceptance of the utility of the market, a point that is supported by a detailed analysis of the labour process, workplace bargaining, and early-nineteenth-century trade unionism. The determination of market relations in this era therefore became a function of both class power and ideological prescription.