Consumerism And The Industrial Revolution

1600 Words7 Pages
The Industrial Revolution was a time of great change throughout the world and marks a major turning point in History. This transition happened from 1760 to the later part of the 19th century. The Revolution originated in the United Kingdom and soon expanded to Western Europe and the United States. The Revolution transformed the U.S. from an agricultural economy to an industrial one, as well as impacting the economy and the general population. The United States used to be mostly agrarian, work and manufacturing was done in people’s homes and many workers would use hand-made machines or tools. Once industrialization started to spread, it changed the system of how people worked and lived. Now, many workers were introduced to new machinery, factories…show more content…
During The Revolution, inventors and engineers improved technology by making it easier to transport goods and be able to create more things due to advanced technology and machinery at the time. Merchants and manufacturers built factories and exploited a wide range of resources and as the output increased, goods that had once been luxury items became part of everyday life. As mass production spread, the American Industrial Revolution began to come of age. In the article, Consumerism and the Industrial Revolution, Ben Fine and Ellen Leopold argue that consumerism had a major effect on the ‘lower classes’ of the time and urbanization created a much higher standard of living than ever before (Fine and Leopold). This relates to my topic and how the demand of lower classes increased because of all of the new products were coming in. One of America’s foremost industrialists, Henry Ford, helped revolutionize the assembly-line and produce the first successful automobile. Since Henry Ford was an industrialist, he knew all of the new technology used and relied on it for his career. Henry Ford states, "We are entering an era when we shall create resources which shall be so constantly renewed that the only loss will be not to use them. There will be such a plenteous supply of heat, light and power that it will be a sin not to use all we want. This era is coming now. And it is coming by way of Water" (Henry Ford). This source helps further prove my thesis because he was alive during that time and believed that the new era would create new resources and the U.S. would be able to advance and progress for the better. Before the Industrial Revolution, the economy was agricultural and then it transformed into an economy that depended on industrialization and new technology and
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