English - Economy



Subsistence and Commercial Activities. For planning purposes, England is divided into eight regions, but it can be grouped into four divisions comprising the north, Midlands, southeast, and southwest. The north contains about one-third of the total land area and one-third of the population. Although there is some dairy and grazing livestock production, the division is highly industrial, comprising 35 percent of England's manufacturing labor force (43 percent of England's total work force in manufacturing). Most cities are near coal fields. Old, stable industries have declined, leading to unemployment. Emigration from the region has been high, although the region continues to have a slight population increase. The Midlands has about half of its workers employed in manufacturing industries, making automobiles, metal goods, and related products. About 3 percent of them work in coal and iron ore fields and 1.5 percent in mixed farming. It is common to find villages that specialize (locks and keys in Willenhall, needles and hooks in Ridditch, and so on). In the southeast, more than 60 percent of the labor force is in Service industries such as construction and public administration, 32 percent in manufacturing, and less than 2 percent in agriculture. Electrical equipment, machinery, paper, printing, and publishing are the leading industries. The southwest has a lower population. Dairy farming is prominent and manufacturing employs 32 percent of the labor force. Many people retire there and tourism is important. However, unemployment is also high. In essence, England has been going through a long process of change. In the nineteenth century, the north, which was previously underdeveloped and backward, became the powerhouse or "workshop of the world." As the United Kingdom lost its prominence in the world economy, the north also lost its importance and power shifted to the southeast.

Industrial Arts. Service industries employ about half of England's work force, while a third of the workers are in manufacturing and engineering. The remainder are in agriculture, construction, mining, and energy.

Trade. Three types of trade take place in English communities. The traditional institution is the central market, which is often covered but open. It has stalls that sell everything from fish to clothes. Within neighborhoods there are clusters of specialty shops which usually comprise a grocer, butcher, newsstand, appliance store, and sweet shop. Since 1970, chain enterprises in fast food and groceries have developed and expanded.

Division of Labor. There is a hierarchy and division of labor with limited mobility. In manufacturing, jobs are specialized according to skill and hierarchy of class is maintained where bosses have authority over subordinates. Division of labor according to gender is diminishing in the workplace as well as the domestic sphere. Class consciousness is decreasing, with the upwardly mobile young urban professional (Yuppie) becoming a dominant role model.

Land Tenure. Land in England is privately owned.


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