Men at Work
This study redresses the North and South imbalance of much work on economic and social history by focusing on the lives and economic impact of the building trade in the major urban centres of the North during the early modern period. The period 1450-1750 witnessed substantial changes in England: to the size of national population, the range of industry practised, the commodity structure and patterns of overseas trade; in agricultural techniques; and in the proportion of population tied to the soil. Using many hitherto unworked sources from local archives, the author challenges many prevailing orthodoxies. He addresses conditions of work in the building trades, levels of remuneration, the characteristics of the life cycles of male and female workers, gender differences in work, and relationships with employers.