The Open UniversitySkip to content

From artisans to 'factories': the interpenetration of craft and industry in English cheese-making, 1650–1950

Blundel, Richard and Tregear, Angela (2013). From artisans to 'factories': the interpenetration of craft and industry in English cheese-making, 1650–1950. In: Casson, Mark and Casson, Catherine eds. History Of Entrepreneurship: Innovation And Risk-Taking, 1200–2000. The International Library of Entrepreneurship, 2. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp. 587–621.

Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


This article traces the uneven development of English cheesemaking from its early commercialization to the eventual triumph of the 'cheese factory'. The narrative shows how contemporary actors initiated and adapted to changes in technology, distribution, consumption, and regulation. It indicates that artisanal practices have both borrowed from and become integrated with industrial logics and strategies, exemplifying a process that Charles F. Sabel and Jonathan Zeitlin termed the 'recombinablility and interpenetration' of different forms of economic organization [World of Possibilities: Flexibility and Mass Production in Western Industrialization, Cambridge, U.K., 1997), 2–3]. International comparisons are introduced to clarify the reasons for England’s halting and idiosyncratic transition to industrial-scale cheese-making.

Item Type: Book Section
Copyright Holders: 2013 Oxford University Press
ISBN: 1-78195-523-9, 978-1-78195-523-9
Extra Information: This book chapter reproduces an article first published in Enterprise and Society: The International Journal of Business History, 7, 4: 1-35 (2006), (ISSN: 1467-2227, ESSN: 1467-2235) DOI:10.1093/es/khl044. It forms part of a two-volume collection of 61 articles, dating from 1938 to 2011, with a new introduction by the editors, M. Casson and C. Casson.
Keywords: industrialisation; craft production; technological innovation; social innovation; cheese-making
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business > Department for Public Leadership and Social Enterprise
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL)
Research Group: Innovation, Knowledge & Development research centre (IKD)
Related URLs:
Item ID: 39783
Depositing User: Richard Blundel
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2014 08:00
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2018 19:11
Share this page:

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   contact the OU