Integrated Humanities: Industrial Revolution

Topics: Industrial Revolution, Steam engine, Heat engine Pages: 5 (1504 words) Published: August 23, 2013
Question: Textile industry is the most significant factor in industrialization. To what extent do you agree?

I agree to the statement that the textile industry was the most significant factor in industrialization in the 18th and 19th centuries in Britain to a great extent. The development of the textile industry promoted the productivity of manufacturing textile. The more textile products were produced and they satisfied the marketing requirement. Some of the excessive products were exported overseas and gained great income for Britain. The capital also contributed to other constructions. To improve the productivity, steam engines were introduced as well as the other innovative inventions. Then the application of these engines turned the previously manual labor and draft animal based manufacturing into machine based economy. Also, the industry even provided occupations for the unemployed transients. In a word, it was the textile industry which triggered the commencement of British Industrialization and invention of many marked machines. As the core and basic industry in Britain, it plated an very important part in industrialization. However, other factors like steam engines were dependent on the textile industry. Industrialization was a great ideal of progress in industry taking place in Britain in 18th and 19th centuries. Goods were no more made slowly and expensively by craftsmen at home with hand tools. Instead they were mass produced quickly and cheaply in factories with the aid of machines. Later, I will explain and elaborate the importance of the textile industry and the reason why other factors were not as significant as this one.

Along the progress of textile industry, several extraordinary innovative inventions were created. At first, the cotton cloth was made by workers in their own homes. In other words, the industry was organized on the domestic system, which provided very low efficiency and productivity and it caused the situation that the whole country only imported 500000kg of raw cotton to make into clothes. Then the flying shuttle invented by John Kay allowed a weaver to work twice as quickly as before. Afterwards, James Hargreaves made a spinning machine named after his wife ‘Jenny’ which could spin 120weavers, much more than 16 threads comparing with before. But all these above were only attachment to the handloom, it didn’t promote the workers to produce more quickly. Later, the revolutionary invention made by Richard Arkwright was a very heavy machine. For the purpose of turning it, the water wheel and then steam engine were introduced. Gradually, many workers took the responsible of each specific area of making textile because the complicated machines needed cooperation. Then the factories formed. there were more and more textile production produced. They satisfied the marketing requirement and reduced the price of the textile. The ordinary people were delighted. So we can say that the textile industry dealt with the cloth shortage due to previously low productivity, and it stimulated the invention of other things, like steam engines, water wheels, and even iron since iron was the core material to make machinery. And the change in main forms of making textile turned the industry from cottage-based to factory-based. In addition, the change in technologies the workers used turned the industry from previously manual and draft-animal based to the machine-based. And these two elements should be the most obvious changes during industrialization. Furthermore, the income made by exportation was unbelievable. The share of total exports in percentages turned from1 in 1750 to 46 in 1831. The capital was applied to the other developments, such as railway building. Also the many jobs provided by newly set factories helped the unemployed transients who were the originally poor farmers suffering from enclosure act to make a living.

Compared with influences the textile industry brought, the others’ seemed...
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