The Industrial Revolution was a time of great age throughout the world. It represented major change from 1760 to the period 1820-1840. The movement originated in Great Britain and affected everything from industrial manufacturing processes to the daily life of the average citizen. I will discuss the Industrial Revolution and the effects it had on the world as a whole.
The primary industry of the time was the textiles industry. It had the most employees, output value, and invested capital. It was the first to take on new modern production methods. The transition to machine power drastically increased productivity and efficiency. This extended to iron production and chemical production.
It started in Great Britain and soon expanded into Western Europe and to the United States. The actual effects of the revolution on different sections of society differed. They manifested themselves at different times. The ‘trickle down’ effect whereby the benefits of the revolution helped the lower classes didn’t happen until towards the 1830s and 1840s. Initially, machines like the Watt Steam Engine and the Spinning Jenny only benefited the rich industrialists.
The effects on the general population, when they did come, were major. Prior to the revolution, most cotton spinning was done with a wheel in the home. These advances allowed families to increase their productivity and output. It gave them more disposable income and enabled them to facilitate the growth of a larger consumer goods market. The lower classes were able to spend. For the first time in history, the masses had a sustained growth in living standards.
Social historians noted the change in where people lived. Industrialists wanted more workers and the new technology largely confined itself to large factories in the cities. Thousands of people who lived in the countryside migrated to the cities permanently. It led to the growth of cities across the world, including London, Manchester, and Boston. The permanent shift from rural living to city living has endured to the present day.
Trade between nations increased as they often had massive surpluses of consumer goods they couldn’t sell in the domestic market. The rate of trade increased and made nations like Great Britain and the United States richer than ever before. Naturally, this translated to military power and the ability to sustain worldwide trade networks and colonies.
On the other hand, the Industrial Revolution and migration led to the mass exploitation of workers and slums. To counter this, workers formed trade unions. They fought back against employers to win rights for themselves and their families. The formation of trade unions and the collective unity of workers across industries are still existent today. It was the first time workers could make demands of their employers. It enfranchised them and gave them rights to upset the status quo and force employers to view their workers as human beings like them.
Overall, the Industrial Revolution was one of the single biggest events in human history. It launched the modern age and drove industrial technology forward at a faster rate than ever before. Even contemporary economics experts failed to predict the extent of the revolution and its effects on world history. It shows why the Industrial Revolution played such a vital role in the building of the United States of today.
Essay about Effects of the Industrial Revolution
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The Industrial Revolution that took place throughout the 18th and the 19th centuries had major effects which influenced every aspect of society and life such as, urbanization, imperialism and nationalism. The industrial revolution had an unfathomable effect on shaping the modern world to what it is today. Before the revolution, society revolved around farming and agriculture. There were only two social classes, the nobility and the working class. Little did they know, that their lives were about to change dramatically and continue changing for the next generations to come. Urbanization is the movement of people to city areas. There are many reasons why urbanization occurred on a large-scale during the industrial revolution. The…show more content…
On the other end of the society scale, the working poor were working and living in unbearable conditions. There were no irrigation systems, running water or any way of preserving hygiene in the homes or the factories. The working poor lived in slums and tenements which were breeding grounds for diseases. In the book, “The Condition of the Working-Class in England in 1844” by Friedrich Engels, he states, “...at the end of the covered passage, a privy without a door, so dirty that the inhabitants can pass into and out of the court only by passing through foul pools of stagnant urine and excrement.” (page 78)1. This gives us a peek into the horrible unsanitary conditions that the working class were forced to endure while the business owners were living in beautiful mansions and summer houses. Mortality rates were decreasing rapidly. This was not only an effect of the poor living conditions, but also of the high pollution that was being created by the factories. Without the proper piping that is needed, the streets which were already filled with trash, also became smoggy and polluted. Women and child labor were very common in the industrial revolution with employees working from twelve to sixteen hours a day and being paid scarcely enough to get by. Nationalism can be described as a deep devotion to one's country, and in this case, can be used as a device for propaganda. They used it to evoke loyalty in