The Convoluted Industrial Revolution Essay

908 words - 4 pages

The Industrial Revolution was an era of technological growth that rapidly met the demands of consumers’ needs, despite having social and economic injustices. The revolution was worth a few generations of suffering because it bettered the future lives of many. The Industrial Revolution negatively affected numerous people, but this “suffering” was a prior problem and in fact, proved ultimately beneficial; in addition, the revolution brought about both positive laws and a vast amount of new technology.
The concept of “suffering” has been a major fact of life since the beginning of time. However, the Industrial Revolution managed to shine a light on suffering, which stirred up many hasty feelings about a glorious time of invention. What many people tend to misunderstand when dealing with the Industrial Revolution, was that child labor has existed for many years prior to the revolution. During the Victorian Era, young children would work in cotton mills in brutal conditions with minimal breaks and meager pay (Ward). By no means, would child labor be a positive thing or encouraged in today’s society, but it cannot be blamed on the Industrial Revolution. Society has a right to feel disgraced by the horror stories of the workers’ pain and abuse that happened when they were child-workers, but society should not group the start of child labor or the cause of child-labor with the revolution (Cooper).
The Industrial Revolution’s exhibition of cruel labor and arduous conditions brought about many future laws to prevent the cruel treatment from reoccurring. In present day society, children are not allowed to work until the age of sixteen except in family-owned businesses. In addition, children may not work in hazardous jobs and their hours are more restricted than those of the adults. In present times as well, there is a set minimum wage that low-income jobs must pay their workers, and workers have the legal right to form labor unions. However, these benefits were not always there. One example, Anna Maier, a child worker-turned socialist worker, was at first denied a job in a factory not based upon anything but her gender and age. However, it was not by her free-will that she got a job; her family forced her to become employed. She later joined a political organization, or a union, for the sake of the children whose families want to force them into the same misery she lived (Maier).The children that were usually hired were hired based upon the fact that they were given severely lowered wages because either they were working to keep their families from starving, or they were orphans who worked to make the lives of officials easier (Ellis and Esler 506). In addition, they were being fed drugs to suppress their hunger in order to make the pain “go away” (Alcott). Lastly, however, because of the revolution and the issues with mal-labor,...

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