Industrialization: Progress or Decline?

Topics: Industrial Revolution, Factory, Mass production Pages: 2 (408 words) Published: April 7, 2007
The New York Times article reported China's disregard for workers in its growing factories. Stearns and Chapman's excerpt wrote that although working conditions were not great and wages low, it was still an improvement compared to life before the Industrial Revolution. The Testimony for the Factory Act of 1833 provided testimonies from workers and owners about how the factories were run. Last, Engle's excerpt was about the poor lifestyles of the workers in the city and how it matched the poor working conditions in the factory.

Although the evidence against industrialization is overwhelming, it cannot be denied that it was the foundation for our modern world. From the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, life got better instead of getting worse. Stearns and Chapman state "When they found factory employment, workers seldom could note a significant worsening of their situation: many factory workers actually gained some ground in standard living". From the start many peasants increased living conditions from pre-industrial life.

Another way in which the Industrial Revolution was it allowed the manufacture of goods at such a faster rate then if done by hand. As quoted in a high school history book, "A…element of mass production is the assembly line…A conveyor belt carried the unfinished product past each worker in turn…each worker performed a special task. The assembly line saved time and energy and increased the number of times per hour a worker could perform the assigned task". An item could have been reproduced many times over thanks to the assembly line.

The Industrial Revolution also allowed the middle class and women to own items of luxury. The same high school textbook, states "the Industrial Revolution brought new wealth and greater luxury to middle-class women, who could hire servants to cook, clean, and take care of their children". This was a big change compared to life back on the farm, where people only had what they made or grew...
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