Chapter 22 - The Revolution in Energy and Industry

    The Industrial Revolution in Great Britain

    1. Great Britain (England, Scotland, Wales) was the pioneer in industrialization--which was largely unplanned and with no precedent.
    2. The eighteenthcentury origins of the Industrial Revolution
      1. A colonial empire, the expanding Atlantic trade, and a strong and tarifffree home market created new demands for English manufactured goods.
      2. Cheap food also increased this demand because people could now spend more on clothing, toys, and so on.
      3. Available capital, stable government, economic freedom, and mobile labor in England encouraged growth.
      4. The Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain in the 1780s and on the Continent after 1815.
    3. The first factories
      1. Growing demand for textiles led to the creation of the world's first large factories.
        1. The puttingout system could not keep up with demand.
        2. Hargreaves's spinning jenny and Arkwright's water frame speeded up the spinning process.
        3. Cotton spinning was gradually concentrated in factories.
      2. Cotton goods became cheaper and more widely available.
      3. The wages of weavers rose rapidly, and many agricultural workers became handloom weavers.
      4. Working conditions in the early factories were worse than those for people spinning and weaving at home; factories were viewed as poorhouses.
      5. Abandoned children became a prime source of labor in the early factories.
        1. These "apprenticed" workers commonly worked 13-14 hours per day.
        2. This exploitation led to reform and humanitarian attitudes toward children.
      6. By 1831, the cotton textile industry had grown to 22 percent of the country's entire industrial production.
    4. The problem of energy
      1. The search for a solution to the energy problem was a major cause of industrialization.
      2. From prehistoric to medieval times the major energy sources were plants and animals, and human beings and animals did most of the work.
      3. Energy from the land was limited.
        1. By the eighteenth century, Britain's major source of fuel, wood, was nearly gone.
        2. Wood was crucial as a source of heat and as a source of charcoal for the production of iron.
        3. A new source of power and energy was needed, so people turned to coal.
    5. The steam engine breakthrough
      1. Before about 1700, coal was used for heat but not to produce mechanical energy or to run machinery.
        1. The coal that one miner extracted in one day could be converted into enough energy to create about 27 days' worth of similar energy for other production.
      2. Early steam engines, such as those of Savery (1698) and Newcomen (1705), were inefficient but revolutionary converters of coal into energy.
      3. In the 1760s, in Scotland, James Watt increased the efficiency of the steam engine and began to produce them.
      4. Steam power was used in many industries, and it encouraged other breakthroughs.
        1. It enabled the textile industry to expand.
        2. The iron industry was transformed as steam power made coke available.
        3. Cort's puddling furnace led to increased production of pig iron.
    6. The coming of the railroads
      1. Stephenson's steampowered Rocket was Europe's first locomotive--running on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, the first important railroad (1830).
      2. The railroad boom (1830-1850) meant lower transportation costs, larger markets, and cheaper goods.
      3. Railroad building took workers from their rural life and made them more inclined to become urban dwellers.
      4. The railroad changed the outlook and values of the entire society.
    7. Industry and population
      1. The 1851 Great Exposition, held in the Crystal Palace, reflected the growth of industry and population in Britain and confirmed that Britain was the "workshop of the world."
      2. GNP grew by 400 percent and population boomed, but average consumption grew by only 75 percent.
        1. Malthus argued that the population would always exceed the food supply.
        2. Ricardo said that wages would always be low.
        3. However, Malthus and Ricardo were proved wrong in the long run.

    Industrialization in continental Europe

    1. Outside of Britain, industrialization proceeded gradually, with uneven jerks and national and regional variations.
    2. National variations
      1. Statistics show that between 1750 and 1830, Britain industrialized more rapidly than other countries--moving twice as fast, for example, as France in 1830.
      2. Belgium followed Britain's lead, with France showing gradual growth.
      3. By 1913, Germany and the United States were closing in on Britain; the rest of Europe (along with Japan) grew, while some Asian states (India, China) lost ground.
    3. The challenge of industrialization
      1. Revolutions and wars on the Continent retarded economic growth after 1789.
      2. Continental countries found it difficult to compete with Britain after 1815 because it was so economically and technologically advanced.
      3. However, continental countries had three advantages.
        1. Most continental countries had a rich tradition of puttingout enterprise, merchantcapitalists, and urban artisans.
        2. Britain had done the developmental pathbreaking, so other countries could simply copy the British way of doing things.
        3. The power of strong central governments could be used to promote industry.
    4. Agents of industrialization in continental Europe
      1. Cockerill, in Belgium, was one of many Englishmen who brought British industrial secrets to other parts of Europe.
      2. In Germany, Harkort's failed attempt to industrialize Germany illustrates the difficulty of duplicating the British achievements.
      3. Governments aided industrialists by erecting tariffs, building roads and canals, and financing railroads.
      4. Many thinkers and writers, such as List in Germany, believed that industrialization would advance the welfare of the nation.
        1. List supported the idea of a tarifffree zone in Germany, the Zollverein (1834).
        2. Henceforth, goods could move among the German member states without tariffs, but goods from other nations were subject to a tariff.
      5. Banks played a more important role in industrialization on the Continent than in Britain.
        1. Industrial banks, such as the Crédit Mobilier, became important in France and Germany in the 1850s.
        2. These industrial banks mobilized the savings of thousands of small investors and invested them in transportation and industry.

    Capital and labor in the age of the Industrial Revolution

    1. The new class of factory owners
      1. As the careers of Watt and Harkort illustrate, capitalist owners were locked into a highly competitive system.
      2. The early industrialists came from a variety of backgrounds.
        1. Some came from merchant families, while others came from artisan backgrounds.
        2. Quakers and Scots were important in Britain, while Protestants and Jews were important in France.
      3. As factories grew larger, opportunities declined.
        1. Wives and daughters of successful businessmen were shut out of business activity and were expected to concentrate on feminine and domestic activities.
    2. The new factory workers
      1. Many observers claimed that the Industrial Revolution brought misery to the workers.
        1. The romantic poets Blake and Wordsworth protested the life of the workers and the pollution of the land and water.
        2. The Luddites smashed the new machines they believed were putting them out of work.
        3. Engels wrote a blistering attack on the middle classes, The Condition of the Working Class in England (1844).
      2. Others, such as Ure and Chadwick, claimed that life was improving for the working class.
      3. The statistics with regard to purchasing power of the worker (real wages) show that there was little or no improvement between 1780 and 1820.
        1. Between 1792 and 1815, living conditions actually declined as food prices rose faster than wages.
        2. Only after 1840 did a substantial improvement in real wages occur. Even in this era of improving purchasing power, hours of labor increased and unemployment was present.
      4. Diet probably improved, as did the supply of clothing, but housing did not.
    3. Conditions of work: were workers exploited?
      1. Working in the factory meant more discipline and less personal freedom--the factory whistle replaced the more relaxed pace of cottage work.
      2. The refusal of cottage workers to work in factories led to child labor.
        1. The use of pauper children was forbidden in 1802.
        2. Urban factories attracted whole families, as did coal mining, and tended to preserve kinship ties.
        3. Children and parents worked long hours.
      3. Parliament acted to limit child labor.
        1. Robert Owen, a successful manufacturer in Scotland, proposed limiting the hours of labor and child labor.
        2. The Factory Act of 1833 limited child labor and the number of hours children could work in textile factories.
        3. Factory owners were required to establish elementary schools for the children of their employees.
      4. Subcontracting led to a close relationship between the subcontractor and his work crew, many of whom were friends and relations.
        1. Subcontracting helped maintain kinship ties.
    4. The sexual division of labor
      1. A new pattern of "separate spheres" emerged.
        1. The man emerged as the family's primary wage earner, while the woman found only limited job opportunities.
        2. Married women were much less likely to work outside the house after the first child arrived.
        3. Women were confined to lowpaying, deadend jobs.
      2. The reasons for this reorganization of paid work along gender lines are debated.
        1. One argument centers on the idea of a deeply ingrained "patriarchal tradition," which grew out of the preindustrial craft unions.
        2. Others claim that factory discipline conflicted with strong incentives on the part of mothers to concentrate on child care.
        3. This theory centers on the claim that women saw division of labor as the best strategy for family survival in the industrializing society.
        4. Others argue that sexual division of labor was part of an effort to control the sexuality of workingclass youth.
        5. Conditions in the coal industry illustrated these points.
    5. The early labor movement
      1. Many kinds of employment changed slowly; farm and domestic labor continued to be most common, and smallscale handicraft production remained unchanged in many trades.
      2. Working-class solidarity and class consciousness developed--particularly in the north of England--and many employers adopted the feeling that unions were a form of restriction on industrial growth.
        1. The Combination Act of 1799 outlawed unions and strikes.
        2. An 1813-1814 law ended wage regulations and allowed the labor market to be flooded with women and children.
      3. Workers continued to organize and strike, and the Combination Acts were repealed in 1824.
      4. Owen and others tried to create a national union of workers (the GNCTU), and then after 1851 the craft unions (called "new model unions") won benefits for their members.
      5. Chartism was a workers' political movement that sought universal male suffrage, shorter work hours, and cheap bread.


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