Glossary of Humanities Industrial Revolution

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economic system in which individuals rather than government control the factors of production in order to produce goods themselves
commercial capitalism

Form of pre-industrial Revolution capitalism where merchant bought sold and exchanged goods.
division of labour
hiring a large number of unskilled labourers and dividing manufacturing process into a series of steps while assigning a step to each worker
What are the advantages of division of labour?
as production increased, the cost of the item produced was reduced ( many steps performed by machines - also aided this process)
How were interchangeable parts used?
American inventor Eli Whitney used combination of division of labour and interchangeable parts to make muskets
What were the advantages of interchangeable parts?
You could have some working on musket barrels, some on stock, some on trigger mechanisms. This standardized the product unlike earlier gunsmiths who made all the guns by hand (each slightly different as a result)
It also increased production, reduced cost, made parts replaceable hence, repairable by replacing parts
assembly line
involved a moving conveyor belt which carried unfinished products - as each item passed, each worker performed a specific task
enclosure movement
practice of fencing or enclosing common lands into individual holdings.
crop rotation
the practice of alternating crops of different kinds to preserve soil fertility.
factors of production
basic resources necessary for industrialization, such as land, labor, and capital
use of automatic machinery to increase production.
domestic system
method of production in which work is done in the home rather than in a shop or factory
factory system
production of goods in a factory through the use of machines and a large number of workers
bessemer process
method of making steel that involves the forcing of air through molten iron to burn off carbon and other impurities.
James Hargreaves
a poor English weaver who came up with the "spinning jenny" in the 1760's
Richard Arkwright
made further improvements on the "spinning jenny" by creating a water-powered machine called the water frame.
Eli Whitney
invented the cotton gin which cleaned cotton much more quickly and efficiently than by hand
John McAdam
worked out a new way of bulding roads that improved travel conditions. He invented macadam roads.
Robert Fulton
an American engineer and inventor. He was the first to succeed at adapting the steam engine for use on ships. He invented the steamboat.
Samuel Morse
invented Morse Code and the telegraph. He created the first electronic communications device.
Cyrus Field
laid a cable across the Atlantic Ocean so that Americans could communicate with Englishmen easily.
mass production
system of manufacturing large numbers of identical items
Sole propreitorship
business owned and controlled by one person
business owned and controlled by two or more people.
business organization in which individuals buy shares of stock, elect directors to decide and hire managers, and receive dividends according to the number of shares they own.
complete control of the production or sale of a good or service by a single firm
combination of corporations that control an entire industry
business cycle
pattern consisting of alternating periods of prosperity and decline.
lowest point of a business cycle
Adam Smith
a Scot who accepted some of the ideas of the Physiocrats. He believes that the law of supply and demand and the law of competition regulate all business and economic activity.
David Ricardo
an English businessman who amassed a large fortune early in life and then elected to the House of Commons. He wrote that as population grows, more and more workers become available and wages inevitably drop
Thomas Malthus
an Anglican clergyman who became a professor of economics. He wrote that “population increases present the greatest obstacle to human progress.”
Free enterprise
economic system based on supply demand, and competition, where laws and regulations are thought to interfere with the working of the system. There should be no boundaries from the government.

belief that government should not interfere with the operations of business
belief that the principle of utility or usefulness, was the standard by which to measure a society and its laws.
Jeremy Bentham
a philosopher who arguer that every act of a society should be judged in terms of its utility or usefulness. His theory was known as utilitarianism.
John Stuart Mills
a believer in laissez-faire. He criticized what he considered the economic injustices and inequalities of British Society.
Charles Dickens
the great English writer who used his novels Dombey and Son and Hard Times to attack selfish business leaders. In David Copperfield he drew on his wretched childhood.
bargaining method involving the refusal of workers to work until their demands have been met. Withdrawal of services to pressure owners to make concessions – wages, conditions
associations of workers that plan actions and coordinate demands for workers
combinations acts of 1799 and 1800
stated that people who united with others to demand higher wages, shorter hours, or better working conditions could be imprisoned.
collective bargaining
process of negotiation between union members and management.

political and economic system in which the government owns the means of production.
utopian socialism
persons who believe that people can lice at peace with each other it they live in small cooperative settlements, owning all of the means of production in common and sharing the products.
authoritarian socialism
economic and political system in which the government owns almost all the means of production and controls economic planning communism.
democratic socialism
economic and political system in which the government owns almost all the means of production and controls economic planning; authoritarian socialism
Karl Marx
a journalist who felt the entire capitalist system should be changed. Marx believed that all the great changes in history came from changes in economic conditions. Marx argues that wealth is created by labor. Under capitalism, he said, labor receives only a small fraction of the wealth it creates.
city-dwelling middle class, mad up of merchants, manufacturers, and professional people such as doctors and lawyers; in Marxist philosophy, owners of property.
name given by Marx to the working class.

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