, Volume 22, Issue 3, pp 603-606
Date: 11 Oct 2012

Medicos on the move

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In the background of Performing Medicine is one of the great transformations in human history: the first Industrial Revolution. The population of England took off in historically unprecedented fashion. It virtually tripled from about 6 millions in 1750 to 18 millions in 1851. By the end of the nineteenth century, it had doubled again to 36 millions. In 1750 most people lived in villages and either combined a trade with agriculture or worked full-time on the land; by 1850 the nation’s most noticed—and feared—characteristic was the mushrooming growth of great manufacturing conurbations like Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool, making England the most heavily urbanised society in the world. The manufacturing of iron and steel, textiles and many other industries moved from small workshops to crowded, unsafe factories surrounded by desperately overcrowded, unsanitary slums. Previously, provincial regions were linked into a unified economy by an intensifying communications revolution