Change and Modernization: The Industrial Revolution (an anthropologists point of view)

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The Industrial Revolution has had a tremendous impact on the whole world. But because of its British origin the people living on the island bore most of the hardships and went through the quickest and most radical change out off all the people affected by this movement. The beginning of the movement can be traced to 1750 and continued through to about 1870. Although Britain was the epicenter of this change not many countries were unaffected by this. It may be argued that the reason the Industrial Revolution spanned a period of 120 years was due to it transforming a large-scale culture as opposed to a quicker change in a small-scale 'Arembepe' like culture. Subsequent to the revolution, agricultural growth took a backseat to technological…show more content…
The English "consumed far greater amounts of meat than their French counterparts" (Evans, 6) and what is even more surprising is that this prosperity was also enjoyed by populations living well outside urban settlements. Stratification in British society was more than evident in this period and this is evident by unequal access to wealth, status, and power. Aristocracy was an integral part of the society and divine rule was still a universal belief held by most subjects of the British society. Bureaucracy, at the time, was a well established institution which seemed to grow with the growth of the economy subsequent to the Industrial Revolution. The Industrial Revolution was the result of several factors that Britain had supremacy over. The British colonies were at its highest productivity and all the exports were shipped to England where they were sold or used as raw materials for production. It is argued that the cotton industry was the largest contributor to the technological advances of the period, more specifically, advances in weaving techniques. Factories grew in urban areas of England, where labor was plentiful, and it was not long before even the cities were not big enough to supply the labor requirements of the factories. Rural settlements soon were emptied by the promise of prosperity and independence from communal living. Massive amounts of previously agricultural workers were migrating to the cities with no vision of what may be in store for them. What awaited
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