How Has Life Changed Since 1800 Essay

1114 Words Mar 26th, 2015 5 Pages
How has life changed since 1800?

Life as we know it today in the modern world, is significantly different to the lives that our predecessors lived during the period 1500-1800. The changes across the centuries are the result of a process of advancements over time. This essay will examine life in the period 1500-1800 as highlighted in the work of George Blainey (2000) and will compare key differences of life in this early period, against life in the modern world today. Throughout this essay, the main focus will be based on three areas which have seen significant change over this period of time: the production of food, work practices and the standard of living. The advancements in these three areas, has led to societies living very
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409). While these workers could be sure of not going hungry, this meant the take home wages were low.
Living standards as described by Blainey (2000) were bleak. Most people lived in one roomed, small stone houses, often with four or more sharing one bed. Homes often remained unheated due to scarcity of wood (Blainey 2000, p. 423). People were largely uneducated and knew little about healthcare. Sewerage was disposed of in the same rivers that were used to drink and wash from. These contaminated rivers were used to supply water to the growing crops. This had a huge impact on health, causing infection in around two out of every three people in rural areas (Blainey 2000, p. 415). Lack of hygiene and knowledge of healthcare led to shorter lifespans.
Life today in 2014 is vastly different to the period 1500-1800 as described by Blainey (2000). Survival no longer hinges on hunting and gathering food. In fact many people today give little or no thought to food production. Instead, we drive to a supermarket and buy whatever we want to eat. We have access to many restaurants and fast food outlets, so we not only have ample food at our fingertips, we don’t even have to prepare it if we choose not to. Advancements in production and using machines in place of humans (Henslin, Possamai and Possamai-Inesedy 2011, p. 139) mean food is now farmed and produced on a much larger scale (Macionis and
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