How did industrialization influence social structures in Europe?  

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Industrialization radically changed the social structures of European countries during the Industrial Revolution.  Let us examine two ways in which this happened.

First, industrialization brought huge numbers of people off the land and into the cities.  This created a massive working class that did not feel tied to one another and did not feel tied to any of the elites.  This differed greatly from the previous situation in which peasants were connected to one another and to their landlords.

Second, industrialization created a new elite that fought for power and dominance with the old elite.  The old elite held power because it owned land and because it inherited its land and position.   The new elite dominated the economic sphere and soon wanted to affect political life as well.