How did the Industrial Revolution affect mankind? How was it a negative or positive effect?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The Industrial Revolution has impacted humanity in ways that are both good and bad.  Let us look at some of the most important of these impacts.

The major positive impact of the Industrial Revolution is that it has dramatically improved the standard of living in the industrialized world.  Before the Industrial Revolution, nothing was mass produced.  Everything had to be made by hand, meaning that everything took longer to make and was therefore more expensive.  Industrialization allowed the mass production of many goods, making them much cheaper.  It also made possible many technological advances, which made it possible for us to have the things we have today.  Without the Industrial Revolution, we would probably not have things like easy communication and entertainment.  We owe our high standard of living to the Industrial Revolution.

On the other hand, the Industrial Revolution has also led to a number of negative impacts.  One of the most important, and one which may continue to get worse, is the damage that we have done to our environment.  Pollution and the release of greenhouse gasses are legacies of the Industrial Revolution which have made our world less livable.  A second major negative impact is its effect on our quality of life.  Life before the Industrial Revolution was less hurried and more peaceful.  People were poorer, but they were largely able to have more control over their lives.  They worked at their own pace and generally under their own supervision.  They did not have to punch time clocks or keep up with the pace of assembly lines.  There was not the constant need to work and get ahead that has come about because of the capitalist system unleashed by the Industrial Revolution.

In short, the Industrial Revolution has made us much wealthier than ever, but it has in some ways degraded our quality of life.

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wendylogiste1998's profile picture

wendylogiste1998 | eNotes Newbie

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monkeypants's profile pic

monkeypants | Student, Grade 8 | (Level 1) eNoter

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The Industrial Revolution was both good and bad.

It was good because it helped connect different places together and brought people together and closed the spaces between countries.

On the other hand, it was bad because as new machine were being made, people lost their jobs and had no money and had to live on the streets. 

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