Britain’s transition from a predominantly rural preindustrial nation to a more urbanized industrialised country was the key change in economic and social development in the century after 1750 discuss

From an historical perspective, the difference was fundamentally transformational. The changes wrought by industrialization have set human society on an arguably irreversible path.
The country of origin of these changes and thus also the country wherein occurred much of the first research into them was Great Britain. There has been much debate as to the reasons for their onset, but as to the existence of the changes themselves, very little in the way of denial can be maintained. It was in Britain that the sparks of the Industrial Revolution were first lit and the appearance of ‘modern’ socio-economic phenomena began to be seen: urbanization and rationalization. As Eric Hobsbawm put it: ‘[t]he Industrial Revolution marks the most fundamental transformation of human life in the history of the world recorded in written documents’ (Walton 1987, p. 89). In the case of Britain and the world then, the changes were both fundamental and prototypical. Britain was the first to undergo them. Volumes could be written about all these changes. Here we will seek to analyse some of them so as to get an idea of their effects. The case must be made that these changes stood as the most significant economic and social developments of the last three centuries.
It must be recalled that the nature of socio-economic relations prior to industrialization were feudal. Here we must look at the Britain of the mid to late nineteenth century and in a way compare it the one which existed 100 to 150 years prior. This should not be allowed to foster an all too simplistic depiction of the industrialization/modernization process as being one which did not exist and then did exist ex nihilo. The modern era and industrialization, as the socio-economic stage after feudalism, came about gradually and not ‘all at once’. For the purposes here, these phenomena will be presented with attention paid to