Industrial conflict in the development of technical education in England , 1850-1910, with special reference to the mechanical engineering industry.

Cronin, Bernard Peter (1990) Industrial conflict in the development of technical education in England , 1850-1910, with special reference to the mechanical engineering industry. PhD thesis, Middlesex Polytechnic.

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Abstract

This, study seeks to offer a sociological account of the emergence of non university technical education and its development In England in the period 1850-1910. The aim is to show that an explanation of the origin of the form and content of technical education needs to extend beyond changes In 19th century educational policies. An attempt is made therefore to trace the relationship between changes in control of the labour process as exemplified In one of the leading manufacturing industries, mechanical engineering, and developments in technical education. The argument is twofold: The forces underlying the substitution of unskilled for skilled workers and the implementation of new kinds of machines, were also those at work in the demise of the apprenticeship system and the development of a certain form of technical education. The skilled engineering workers' struggles to maintain the apprenticeship system against the employers' reluctance to support it, may be seen as also part of an explanation of the origin and development of technical education The importance of employers and skilled workers in these processes is acknowledged thereby, and a case Is argued, which existing sociological and historical accounts neglect, that the conflictual nature of the social relations of the industry represented an industrial struggle against which plans for a technical education system were being formulated. A key element is the analysis of the Great Strike and Lock-Out of 1897/1898, which is seen as the culmination of a series of conflicts originating in the 1850s. The outcome of the strike confirmed the economic 'short-termism' of employers, deriving from the dominant laissez faire doctrines of the period. Contradictions Inherent In short-term profit seeking at the level of individual employers and expectations from long term projections for a system of technical education at a national level, not only crucially influenced educational legislation, but fostered a neglect of technical education provision.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Research Areas:School of Law > Criminology and Sociology
Theses
ID Code:6365
Deposited On:05 Aug 2010 13:24
Last Modified:19 Jul 2014 03:09

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