The Industrial Revolutions effect on Women

Essay by bluetorch720College, Undergraduate September 2008

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The Industrial Revolution was an important turning point in history. It changed our societies from a mainly agricultural society to one that in which industry and manufacturing was in control. (1). The Industrial Revolution started in Great Britain and then spread to other European countries such as France and Germany. Great Britain was the most powerful country during this time so it made sense that this revolution began there. The Industrial Revolution influenced all aspects of society. Women were no exception; their roles in society changed quite dramatically during this time period.

Women of the working classes would usually be expected to go out to work, often in the mills or mines. As with the children and men the hours were long and conditions were hard.Ó (2) Prior to the Industrial Revolution women's roles were predominantly household chores consisting of cooking, cleaning and raising the children. Now it was becoming required that they go out and work in society.

When the returned from work late at night they were still required to cook, clean and look after the children. These women worked as hard as men, but were paid significantly less than their male counterparts. The industrial age led to a rapid increase in birth rates which clearly has an impact upon the physical strength of the mothers. It was not uncommon for families to have more than 10 children as a result of this demand: and the woman would often have to work right up to and straight after the day of the child's birth for financial reasons, leaving the care of the new born child to older relatives. (2)While in the Industrial revolution had a positive influence on society in the long run, it was very hard for women during this time. Children's lives were also influenced negatively...