When Europe became modern

Caillebotte: Rue de Paris, temps de pluie

Election for the European Parliament is coming up. As EU citizens, today, despite internal differences, we belong to the richest part of the world’s population. But did you know that in the late 1700s, the standard of living in Europe was hardly greater than in the rest of the world – and probably lower than … Read more

Gender or Class?

Kvindelige tekstilarbejdere

Today it is 8 March, the international day for women’s liberation. This day was inaugurated at the international socialist women’s congress, which took place in Copenhagen in 1910. On the occasion of the day I have translated a text about the time, when female workers started organising – and the reactions they were met by, … Read more

A world history of textile work

People have spun yarn and woven fabrics through thousands of years. It was a production which was predominantly carried out as homework or crafts. During the 1700s, though, a revolutionary process was started in England: work became concentrated in large units, equipped with machines powered at first by water wheels and later by steam engines. The industrial form of production spread from England to the European mainland and from there eventually to the rest of the world.

Read moreA world history of textile work