Niall Ferguson,

Civilization: The West and the Rest


The Industrial Revolution: How the West Eclipsed Asia

Like the French Revolution  before it, the British Industrial  Revolution spread across  Europe. But this was a peaceful  conquest. . . The first true  cotton mill, Richard  Arkwright's at Cromford in  Derbyshire, was built in 1771.  Within seven years a copy  appeared in France ... The  Americans, who had the  advantage of being able to  grow their own cotton ... were  a little slower: the first cotton  mill appeared in Bass River,  Massachusetts, in 1788.    ... In 1800 seven out of the  world's ten biggest cities had  still been Asian, and Beijing  had still exceeded London in  size. By 1900, largely as a  result of the Industrial  Revolution, only one of the  biggest was Asian; the rest  were European or American.

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Cambodia's Deadly Experiment

In the 1950s, students started gathering in Paris. They were reading Karl Marx. They were forming book clubs. They were trying to come up with a better version of society. One that moved away from the division of labor. One that moved away from the capitalism in the big cities that they so despised. ... One of those students would change his name to Pol Pot. He and his colleagues formed a new political party, a takeover in Cambodia. They called themsevles the Khmer Rouge. ... Under Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge, one out of four people in that country died in less than four years. 

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