The Effects of the Industrial Revolution on Society

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Frank Garrido


The Industrial Revolution changed the ways by how the world produced its goods. It was the era when the use of power-driven machines was developed. It also changed our societies from a mainly agricultural society to one in which industry and manufacturing was in control. This had many effects on people’s lives.

The Industrial Revolution first got its start in Great Britain, during the 18th century. It was inevitable that the country with the most wealth would lead in this revolution. After it adoption in England, other countries such as Germany, the United States and France joined in this revolution. During this time there were many new technological advancements, socioeconomic and cultural problems arised.

On the technology front, the biggest advancements were in steam power. New fuels such as coal and petroleum were incorporated into new steam engines. This revolutionized many industries including textiles and manufacturing. Also, a new communication medium was invented called the telegraph. This made communicating across the ocean much faster.

But, along with this great leap in technology, there was an overall downfall in the socioeconomic and cultural situation of the people. Growth of cities was one of the major consequences of the Industrial Revolution. Many people were driven to the cities to look for work; in turn they ended up living in the cities that could not support them. With the new industrial age, a new quantitative and materialistic view of the world took place. This caused the need for people to consume as much as they could. This still happens today.

Before the Revolution most people lived in small villages, working either in agriculture or as skilled craftsmen. They lived and often worked as a family, doing everything by hand. In fact, three quarters of Britain's population lived in the countryside, and farming was the predominant occupation (Porter)....
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