What impact did the Industrial Revolution have on the relationship between armed forces and the societies that supported them?

2 Answers

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The Industrial Revolution did at least two major things to this relationship.  On the one hand, it separated the military from society.  With industrialization, large standing armies became possible and even necessary as armies had to be trained to use ever more complex weapons.  This widened the gap between the civilian and military worlds.

On the other hand, the Industrial Revolution drew them closer together.  With industrialized militaries, the military came to be a bigger part of the economy.  Countries had to have whole sectors dedicated to producing weapons.  This became more true as weapons became more complex.  The military-industrial complex formed and the armed forces became more of an integral part of nations' economies than ever before.

samo35's profile pic

samo35 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 2) eNoter

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Well how does the development of the so-called military-industrial complex in their period reverberate in our present?