The Industrial Revolution has flourished in our great country. As a result, we have become the greatest and most wealthy industrial nation in the world. It is a time of drastic changes and transformation from hand tools, and hand made items to machine manufactured and mass-produced goods.
The Industrial Revolution is absolutely beneficial to the progress of the world; from the late 1700s, when it began, all the way to present day. Sacrifices have and are being made, however they have allowed technological advancements during these times, which in turn, is creating happiness, life opportunities, and an over-all, definite amelioration of life.
At the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, many hardships had to be overcome, causing great grief to most of the population. Faith was lost, patience was tried, and a blanket of oppression covered the people of Europe. As new inventions began to arise and facilitate the mass-producing of goods that supply the people of Europe, nearly everyone was forced to begin a new career within a factory. The reverberations of these new inventions caused a dramatic plummet of the life expectancy of an average citizen to an alarming 15 years of age.
Women and children are expected to work up to 16 hours a day and doing labor that could cause serious injury, like carrying extremely heavy loads. For their work, they are being paid ridiculous wages, women around 5 shillings per week, and children about 1. One can easily recognize the negative aspects of such a dramatic event. However, if one views the revolution as a whole, he will notice that the positive aspects completely out-weigh the negative aspects.
The revolution began as inventors introduced their creations to improve the way people were producing goods. Machines such as the cotton gin, water frame, power loom, and spinning jenny allow textile products to be produced in mass quantities. These techniques of mass-production make other methods such as cottage industry, where families produce items by hand, obsolete.
As a result of this, people are working in factories with these machines. Factories have become so dominant that eventually the cottage industry will no longer play a part in people’s lives. These factories have positive and negative aspects. The work conditions are very dangerous and many have to work long hours. However, due to the mass production, many jobs are available, and the prices of goods are considerably decreasing because of the extreme availability.
The job opportunities and price decrease definitely improve the lives of the people, giving them a chance to be a part of the society and be able to purchase products at a price that is not too bad.
People have realized that there are solutions to some of the problems and hardships that they battle every day. Unions were formed 15 years ago in 1824. A union is an organized group of people working for a mutual cause. Unions create laws and regulations that are making work less dangerous and cruel, and more sanitary. Consecutive acts are also being formed; their purpose is to lessen the amount of hours that women and children can work in the factories. Safety and sanitary regulations have also begun to be enforced.
Recently one act has really benefited the rules of labor for children; this is the Factory Act of 1833. This act states that children have to be over 9 years old to work in factories, and children 9-13 years old cannot work more than 9 hours, and children 13-18 years old cannot work more than 12 hours. These are the positive outcomes that have derived from the industrial revolution and have affected the workers.
Further more, people’s lives outside work have also changed. One very important aspect is that there are many more goods available because of the mass-production. Due to this mass-producing, the goods also dropped in price, which considerably benefits those who are financially struggling.
Along with the mass-producing comes more employment opportunities, which allow some of the less fortunate people to have a chance of getting a job. The increase of new ideas and inventions are leading to an increase of the quality of life. Medicinal products are becoming more plentiful and transportation is improving. People are beginning to find themselves with more leisure time. Wages have increased and health benefits become available. These are just some of the many aspects of the revolution that benefit the people as a nation, which make them happier, and make the government safer from rebellion.
As can be seen, some are struggling and sacrifices are being made, however at the same time people are gaining more benefits, and their lives are becoming better. Thus the hardships and the turmoil of today are increasing the benefits of the tomorrow.