Thesis: Industrial revolution has shaped the world history by causing a changeover in technologic, political and social effects.
Initial accumulation of capital and the formation of manufacturing industry represented the initial stage of the development of capitalist relations. This was the period during which the preconditions for the transition to an industrial economy were prepared. The condition of this transition was the industrial revolution, during which there was a radical restructuring of the technical base of production, forms of organization of production and the whole system of socio-economic relations.
The industrial revolution is a fundamental qualitative restructuring of the material technical base of production and the transition from manual labor to machine, from manufacture to factory industry. There is a new organizational form of production - the factory, where the system of machines is used. Social structure of society begins to change. In the nineteenth century, the Industrial Revolution changed the way goods were manufactured and therefore transformed the nature of work. (Goloboy, 11).
The main technical prerequisite of the industrial revolution was the development of a fundamentally new technology based on scientific discoveries and inventions in mathematics, physics, mechanics and the changes in the material-technical base of production. The new machines appear, which have two main elements: a working machine, which directly handles the source material, and the engine that drives it. Previously, the role of the engine was performed, as a rule, by man, but now – by a steam engine.
Fundamental changes in the material-technical base of production lead to change of socio-economic relations in society. The industrial revolution completes the formation of the two major sections of society - the owners of the means of production and exploited workers. Industrialists and financiers begin to play the leading role in the social structure of society. Stephen Gardiner once said that the Industrial Revolution was one of that extraordinary jumps forward into the story of civilization. (Anderson,67).
I. Technological effects
The justification of the law of conservation and transformation of energy allowed to conclude about the unity of the world and indestructibility of energy. The discovery of electromagnetic induction paved the way for the transformation of electrical energy into mechanical motion. A new phenomenon has been the emergence of links between scientific-technical and production activities.
The creation of machines with other machines has led to the emergence of machine-building factories, equipped with various machines. In the end of the nineteenth century engineering had five types of machine tools — lathes, drilling, planing, milling, grinding. The main line of development of mechanical engineering has been the transition to specialized machines designed for one or more operations. The narrowing of the functions of machine tools led to the simplification of operations and this created the conditions for the use of automatic processes. In 1873, H. Spencer created one of the first automatic machines. (Wright, 556).
The industrial revolution in the textile industry began primarily with the cotton branch. The impetus for technical revolution was the invention mechanical spinning machine "Jenny" in 1733, which allowed the employee to work simultaneously with, at first 8, and then 80 spindles. In 1785 the mechanical loom that could replace up to 40 workers was introduced. By 1832 32 English factories had 5732 looms. (Guest, 47). The invention of watermain that combined the spinning device and the water engine, enabled the creation of a system of machines, the implementation of which was only possible in a separate room - factory. Organization of factory with textile production required relatively small investments, so the first factories that began to arise were specialized in cotton production.
Iron-made tools have become widely used in agricultural production, acreages were expanded, crop rotations were improved, farmers started to use fertilizers, other advances in agronomy and first agricultural machines. In General the village was moving towards new forms of management much slower.
English engineer Bessemer invented converter — rotary furnace for refining iron into steel. The Frenchman Martin designed a furnace for smelting steel of higher quality. Late nineteenth century saw the advent of the electric furnace. The energy basis of industry was changing. The steam engine saw improvments and as a result a powerful heat engine, steam turbine, was created. According to Know-it-Alls, these technical developments started before the Industrial Revolution, however the introduction of more efficient steam engine by James Watt was the beginning of the new era in the world of mining. This invention reduces the fuel consumption and made the mines more profitable. (Know-it-Alls, 27). The use of electricity made a genuine revolution in the energy sector. The energy of coal, peat, oil shale to generate electricity, which could be sent to a distance became widely used. The creation of the dynamo used as a motor became crucial for technological progress.
Canals that connected the commodity areas of the country with industrial centres and had open access to sea ports were built. Development of marine transport was the impetus for the construction of the Suez canal, which lasted from 1859 to 1869. Before the advent of Railways, water transport networks were the main means of transporting goods and raw materials. In 1894 Manchester Ship Canal, the largest canal in the world was opened and the last major canal that was built in UK. (The Guardian, 1894). However, even the fact that it was the biggest in the world never helped it to achieve commercial success. The railways quickly dominated in the world of transport.
2. Rail road
The development of the coal industry and metallurgy have made the task of improving means of transport and transport routes quite urgent. Tim McNeese stated that while the primary usage of steam engines was pumping water from mines or other industrial purposes, one of the most important applications of the engine was construction of the train. (McNeese, 6). In the XIX century the railroad appeared in the lives of the people. For the first time, the rail transport was introduced in England in 1825. In the second half of the nineteenth century the USA had the largest scale of railway construction. Here, in 1869 the first transcontinental railway line that connected the Atlantic coast with the Pacific was opened. In the 80-ies. Horsecar was replaced by tram.
II. Financial effects
The industrial revolution created the conditions for the transformation of society from an agrarian to an industrial one. Capitalist forms of agriculture were previously only implemented in England and Holland. In the early nineteenth century they were introduced in some parts of France, in the North of Italy. Prussian Junkers (landowners) were rebuilding their estates on a capitalist basis, while maintaining the semi-feudal order.
Irreconcilable differences between the North and the South eventually resulted in the Civil war (1861-1865), which ended in complete victory of the North. The civil war led to the implementation of a number of important democratic reforms, finally destroying all the obstacles on the way of rapid development of capitalism in the country. The “American way” of development of capitalism in agriculture — domination on the land of farmers without the feudal landlordism finally won
In Germany, the process of monopolization occurred mainly not on the basis of trusts, like in America, but on the basis of cartels and syndicates — agreements between firms about prices on products, markets, sources of raw materials etc. Before the First World War, the German economy had about 600 monopolistic organizations.
German monopolies have become the biggest and best organized economic force in Europe. However, surpassing English and French (and in something even American) capitalists in the sense of organization, the German financial capital significantly inferiored them in political terms. Bourgeoisie ruled England and France sovereignly and directly, while in Germany, the primacy was on the side of feudal lords and the monarchy.
The volume of German foreign trade in 1870-1913, has increased in about three times. The cost of ready goods was more than 70% of German exports; German products — 50% of the global export of electrical goods. However, the structure of German foreign trade showed a major weakness of the economy — its dependence on raw material and food imports: the value of imports by commodity and food before the First World War exceeded the value of exports for more than 600 million marks. The relatively small German colonies were unable to cover the raw material shortage. This is why, Russian and Ukrainian spaces — as a source of agricultural products and manufactured goods became more important for German capitalism. Complicated foreign trade situation further exacerbated aggressiveness of the German monopolies, strengthened their block with Junker militarism and the monarchy. The military orders of the state were a genuine bonanza for capitalism.
If in 1870 England was producing approximately half on three major contemporary industrial products on the global market - coal, iron and cotton fabrics, in 1913, she gave only 22% of the world coal production, smelting 13% of world iron and consuming 23% of world cotton. The production base of English industry was physically and mentally deprecated.
Private Banking and Capital investment
The introduction of new technology is an extremely complex and expensive case, and the problem of further economic development of England acquired the character of a choice: to invest in the country or to export it to the colonies, where the labour is cheaper, therefore, the profit is higher. English capitalists chose the second path: the export of capital increased, and the growth of English industry started to decrease. Also, shipping of industrial raw materials — non-ferrous metals, rubber, oil, etc. from overseas countries led to an outflow of capital from the country. And world trade policy has changed: more and more countries began to depart from the policy of free trade and returned to protectionism, protecting their industry from the competition of British goods.
The degree of concentration of production and capital in England, where there were many medium and small obsolete facilities, was significantly lower than in the USA and Germany.
A different picture was in the field of credit. Before the First World War 27 major banks of England owed about 86% of all deposits in the country. However, the merging of banks and industrial monopolies did not adopt such a comprehensive character in England as in Germany and the USA. British capitalism was based on the colonial Empire. English colonies (to the beginning of the XX century their size was 100 times bigger than the metropolitan territory) compensated the disadvantages of industrial development. The export of capital left England far behind America and Germany. To the First World War, the amount of capital exported from the UK was approximately a third part of total export value. Up to 3/4 of capital exports went to the British Empire and underdeveloped countries of Latin America (about 20% to the USA, 6% to Europe).
Income from overseas investments into mines, ports, roads, plantations compensated the loss of the world's industrial hegemony. In the end of the nineteenth century the national income of England has increased in 3 times, and income from abroad investments in 9 times. And although, due to the high raw material and food imports, foreign trade balance of England wore a passive character, payment balance, including all types of payments with other countries, has consistently been active, thanks to increasing “invisible income” (interest on capital invested abroad, commercial and banking operations, the freight, insurance, maritime trade, etc.). Negative foreign trade balance was easily overlaped. English banks, which were scattered around the world, developed a great activity on lending to world trade.
The transition from the industrial world hegemony to hegemony within the British Empire, from direct trade manufactured goods to the trade loan, was of course profitable, but actually exacerbated the stagnation of the British economy.
France, actually, repeated the English history: physically and morally worn-out equipment, required replacement, and that required appropriate investments, which were absent.
First of all, the economic damage caused by a national catastrophe — the defeat of France in the war with Prussia in 1870 played its role here. The German annexation of highly developed economic regions of Alsace and especially Lorraine, with its large reserves of iron ore had a severe impact on the state of the French economy. Lorraine’s basin was iron-ore base of the German steel industry, while France had to import iron ore or finished metal. Thus, the war with Prussia significantly slowed the development of heavy industry in France.
Secondly, as noted above, the French bourgeoisie clearly preferred banking activity, not industrial. In the late XIX-early XX centuries usurious features of French capitalism stood out even more sharply. Loans to foreign States gave French bankers a guaranteed income that was not associated with industrial risk, at the same time diverting huge amounts of money from the domestic industry.
B. Vast increase in global trade
It is possible to consider the expansion of trade in the period up to 1750 or 1800 as a result of cheaper transport, creation of new markets thanks to the initiative of the merchants, and the introduction of a new relationships, conducive to trade. All this weighed on the industry, requiring expansion of production to meet demand of new markets, but this pressure contributed to price increase. According to Deane, an obvious way to achieve the growth of economic was to extend its trading relationships and open new markets on the other continents. Basically, this is what Europe was trying to do from 15th to 18th century. (Deane, 54). This changed during the nineteenth century. Trade growth was driven by the demand of factories for raw materials and new markets, which appeared rather through cheaper factory production, than because of the cheapening of transport or changes in the terms of trade. Expansion of production was not a consequence of rising prices: considering the impact of wars and depressions, XIX century is presented as an era of declining prices. In a few words, in that century, economic pressures in favor of expanding trade and transport capability was the reason for the production of a greater volume of products. Technological progress has led to reduced production costs and lower prices.
III. Social effects
The concentration of labor in factories led to the growth of cities,the workers and employees were living. Their population was more mobile compared to the rural population, the families have decreased because children usually resettled from parents and movedto the places where they could find jobs. Families generally consisted only of parents and their minor children, which was typical for urban population. For agricultural countries, a large family consisting of several generations of relatives living in the area is more characteristic. Poorly built houses were severely overcrowded, and people drank water contaminated by sewage and industrial effluent. These poor standards of living lead to proliferation of cholera. In 1854 8032 out 9453 houses had no toilets. During the cholera epidemic in 1953, 1500 out of 90000 population died within five weeks. (Black, 204).
B. Working Conditions
1. Child Labor
Child labour was also widely used on the factories. However, the exploitation of children was not the sole consequence of the industrial revolution. Children were employed in handicrafts and manufactures, and even the most zealous philanthropists of that time promoted the proliferation of child labour. Lewis Hine, a famous American sociologist, once said that there is work that profits children, and there is work that only brings profit to employers. The object of employing children is not to train them, but to get high profits from their work. (National Archives).
When the technology of machine production has widened the scope of application of child labour, the employers did not fail to take advantage of this opportunity, especially because the government encouraged it, and the parents had to put up — often due to poverty and sometimes by tradition. A high proportion of child labour existed in all countries that embarked on the path of the organization of factory industry. In 1788 two-third of factory workers in the UK has not reached 18 years. (Colquon). By the end of the nineteenth century, the number of juvenile factory workers in European countries did not lower. The situation in the US was similar. Here, in 1900, the number of working children aged between 10 and 15 years has reached 1.75 million people.
With the completion of the industrial revolution the process of concentration of production and capital in most Western countries has accelerated. A separate entity with limited capital could not survive in a fierce competitive struggle. Joint stock companies in the form of cartels, syndicates, trusts, controlling the entire sectors of the economy started to appear.
The Rhine-Westphalian coal syndicate in Germany has concentrated a significant portion of the coal production of the country in its hands. "General electricity company" (AEG), Siemens became a monopoly in the electrical industry, entrepreneurs Krupp and Stumm — in military production.
France's steel industry was in the hands of two companies — "the Committee des forges" and Schneider-Creusot.
In England, the important role was played by military concerns Vickers and Armstrong and the Anglo-Iranian oil company. Morgan Steel Corporation and the Rockefeller’s oil trust conquered a significant portion of metallurgy and oil production in the USA. These monopolies controlled small and medium enterprises, dictating their own terms. Rockefeller’s trust was pumping third of crude oil in US, showing an example vertical monopoly that frightened all the conquerors. (Segall, 68).
Anderson, Carol Lee. (2014). History of the Belknap Mill: The Pride of Laconia's Industrial Heritage. p.11.
Black, Jeremy. (2001). Atlas of World History. Dorling Kindersley Publishing Inc. p. 204.
Goloboy, Jennifer L. (2008). Industrial Revolution: People and Perspectives. p.68.
Colquon P. Memorandum on Cotton Manufacture in Great Britain. Manuscript E-46, Kress Library, Harvard
Deane, Phyllis M. (1979). The First Industrial Revolution. p.54.
The Guardian. (1894). Opening of the Manchester ship canal, 1 January 1894. Six years in the making, the world's largest navigation canal gives the city direct access to the sea.
Guest, Richard (1823). "XII". The Compendious History of Cotton-Manufacture. p. 46.
Know-It-Alls. (2008). Industrial Revolution for Know-It-Alls. p.27
McNeese, Tim. (2000). The Industrial Revolution. p.6.
National Archives. Teaching with Documents: Photographs of Lewis Hine: Documentation of Child Labor. Retrieved from http://www.archives.gov/education/lessons/hine-photos/
Segall, Grant. (2001). John D. Rockefeller: Anointed with Oil. p.68.
Wright, John D. (2013). The Routledge Encyclopedia of Civil War Era Biographies. p. 556.