Religion, Technology, and the Great and Little Divergences
Karel Davids, VU University Amsterdam
In Religion, Technology, and the Great and Little Divergences Karel Davids offers a new perspective on technological change in China and Europe before the Industrial Revolution. This book makes an innovative contribution to current debates on the origins of the 'Great Divergence' between China and Europe and the ' Little Divergence' within Europe by analysing the relationship between the evolution of technical knowledge and religious contexts. It deals with the question to what extent disparities in the evolution of technical knowledge can be explained by differences in religious environment. It takes a comparative look at the relation between technology and religion in China and Europe between c.700 and 1800 from four angles: visions on the uses of nature, the formation of human capital , the circulation of technical knowledge and technical innovation.