history outlook

Essay by vbtutt32College, UndergraduateA, November 2014

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Victoria Tuttle


"Pleasures of Factory Life"

In Sarah Bagley's, "Pleasures of Factory Life", she introduces the little space in which working women have to live and enjoy life. Yet, such little space she describes allows them to appreciate, focus and learn more than some people living outside of the factory. Women are the dominating gender working in the factory, but work with elderly women and men, as well as young orphans to prepare them for work they will eventually have to partake in. Most of the daily routine consists of working with the machinery, but this gives them time to communicate and broaden their understanding of life, and one another. The vast plant life around the building gives them the ability to enjoy the smells and reflect on the small blessings in life. Although the deposition in this environment is the inability to ever relax, sometimes think straight, and the "under moral" obligations held by the workers overseers, the peacefulness and privileges that are associated with lectures, religion, and common talk between women seem to be what makes the factory somewhat pleasurable.

"Loom and Spindle"

In Harriet Robinson's, "Loom and Spindle; or Life Among the early Mill Girls", she reflects on a wage cut that sparked a largely supported strike that women partook in. At the time, 1898, factories had already been steadily populated and working for a while, allowing the initial well-paying wage to be cut. The cotton-factory was made up of all women workers, and they worked within separate rooms making up many levels of this factory. After the speech given by one of the girls, it fueled the women to continue on with defending through strike their right to keep the current wage. They sang a song comparing themselves to slaves, due to the hard...