The Industrial Revolution was a period from the 18th to 19th century when fundamental changes occurred in agriculture, transportation, textile, economic policies, metal manufacture, and the social structure in England. It is an era that destroyed the old manner of doing things. The Industrial Revolution was a chief turning point in the history of mankind. Eventually, almost every aspect of life was in some way influenced by this transformation. For instance, population and average income began to show signs of first-time sustained growth. In addition, advances in agriculture practices and techniques resulted in changes in industrial organization, increased supply of raw materials and food, and new technology resulted in increased profits, production, efficiency, and in commerce. Prior to this revolution, manufacturing was done using basic machines and hand tools in people’s homes. Subsequently, the Industrial Revolution marked a shift to special-purpose machinery, powered, mass production and factories (Horn, 2010, p. 331).
The Industrial revolution first took effect in England for various reasons. Mainly, Britain’s economy was founded by an agricultural economy. Secondly, Britain had an expanding economy and numerous natural resources. Subsequently, technology and new inventions helped in sparking the Industrial Revolution through the advancement of various industries. Notably, the first industry to be reformed was the textile industry. With time, other sectors were advanced and growth was evident all over Europe.
Markedly, towards the middle of the 19th century, new machinery such as steam-powered railways and ships was an indication of progress. In addition, introduction of combustion engines and electricity increased production. It may be argued that this massive revolution was enabled higher and quicker rate of industrial production. Ideally, the Industrial Revolution brought numerous changes to many societies across Europe and neighboring continents. However, though these changes benefited society, others caused harm. For instance, the working people in England experienced much pain; they experienced harsh living and working conditions during the revolution. Workers especially children and women were exploited and overworked by the high class in the society. However, although the effects of the Industrial Revolution benefited millions of people in one way or another, they were not worth the suffering and pain they went through.
During the Industrial Revolution, items were manufactured, workers became more productive, and prices dropped. As a result, it was difficult to make items available to the middle and working class. Generally, life improved significantly although a few areas were negatively affected. For instance, Women and children were employed by capitalists and they were forced to work for long hours, pollution increased, and working conditions were harmful (Zanden, 2009, p. 222). A major gap between the poor and the rich was created towards the end of the 19th century. A lot of people felt that things were not done in the right manner, as a result, many philosophies and ideas were created.
During the 1800s, socialism, an economic system called for equal rights, state influence and an end to inhumanity. These programs and movements had a positive effect on the working conditions of workers. With time, the working class and the middle class in society were accepted and recognized accordingly. The Industrial Revolution proved drastic inventions, government and social policies and reforms. Culture and art flourished as many systems were transformed in unique and different styles. After life with machinery was assimilated into society, England was ready for major changes in industrialization. With Industrial Revolution, people’s living standards were raised especially among the upper and middle classes.
As a result of the movement of people from rural to urban areas and industrialization, many European lives were altered. The creation of the working and middle classes and also the massive increase in the European population were significant as they altered the way of life. The Industrial Revolution brought more wealth, power, and technology. Goods were traded from the west and north Indies. People became more civilized as the revolution shaped modern society. Arguably, the Industrial Revolution was a major breakthrough for England and its surroundings. Everything was done in a proper manner and it destroyed the old manner of doing things. Advances in agriculture practices and techniques resulted in changes in industrial organization, increased supply of raw materials and food, and new technology resulted in increased profits, production, efficiency, and in commerce.
The Industrial Revolution proved drastic inventions, government and social policies and reforms. Culture and art flourished as many systems were transformed in unique and different styles. After life with machinery was assimilated into society, England was ready for major changes in industrialization. Among the social effects of Industrial Revolution are; food and nutrition, good living standards, good housing, falling prices in household articles and clothing. With Industrial Revolution, people’s living standards were raised especially among the upper and middle classes (Wyatt, 2009, p. 89). The Industrial Revolution benefited millions of people in one way or another. Subsequently, the effects of this revolution on society were enormous. A great deal of people left rural areas and went to cities and towns to work in various sectors such as industries and factories. Arguably, since the domestication of plants and animals, the Industrial Revolution is the most significant event in history of humanity.
Horn, J., Rosenband, L. N., & Smith, M. R. (2010). Reconceptualizing the Industrial Revolution. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
Zanden, J. L. (2009). The long road to the Industrial Revolution: The European economy in a global perspective, 1000-1800. Leiden: Brill.
Wyatt, L. T. (2009). The industrial revolution. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press.