Kessler “McCellan – Industrial Revolution”

Society was evolving and changing at a rate that hadn’t been seen for thousands of years. It started with a group of hunters and gatherers wanting to find a better way to survive. Shortly came settlements which then lead to the agriculture based and trade based world that became the dominant system. With the Industrial revolution came new ideologies of what should be the primary goal of civilization. It was no longer a goal to survive, but instead to produce and to be efficient. Other changes included passing many laws and acts or ignoring many negative parts of the  that all in favor of production. For example, The parliamentary act of 1799 allowed unions to exist however severely restricted any actions they could have done to better the workplace, even punishing attempts to bring better conditions to the workplace. Figure 1 below depicts an image of child labor in factories during this time period in the Industrial revolution .

Figure 1

The Triangle Shirtwaist factory, while much later, had very similar conditions to these factories that existed in the late 1700s. To get a good understanding of these conditions it helps to see pictures and videos about them. HBO has a documentary called “Triangle Remembering the Fire” which delivers stories about those hurt in the fire as well as depictions on what damage the protection of the big business did to the working class.

However with these negative conditions came a workforce that was very productive. Due to the influence of increasing amounts of trade at this time, projects such as railroad systems and canals were developed. This would allow factories to quickly get needed supplies across the country at much faster rate. As well as upgrading current transportation increasing the capabilities of locomotives and steam engines.


4 Replies to “Kessler “McCellan – Industrial Revolution””

  1. The change in ideologies is something that I hadn’t of thought about before. The world became more about business and the businessmen used whatever methods they could to make more money. This is what leads to child labor, they use it because it was cheap and allowed for more production at lower cost. Fortunately, over time regulations were added to protect people from these businesses taking advantage of people.

  2. It is very interesting to think of the ideology of society at the time surrounding the industrial revolution as shifting from survival to efficiency, and the consequences that that would bring. Thank you for sharing!

  3. I’d differ at the point you made where you said, “However with these negative conditions came a workforce that was very productive. ” One of the commentators mentioned that such kind of abuse leads to child labor. On that note, drawing a similar connection to the Ancient Greek civilization where the Greeks failed to be more efficient and optimize their tasks due to the presence of slaves.
    So, do you think that if children and workers were given a better treatment, yet made them aware of the opportunities that lay ahead, factories would have become more efficient than the measured output?

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