Industrial States & the Rise of the West

Essay by jeyy06College, Undergraduate March 2008

download word file, 7 pages 5.0

Industrialization generally refers to a process of social and economic change whereby a human society is transformed from a pre-industrial (an economy where the amount of capital accumulated per capita is low) to an industrial state. It is a part of wider modernization process that more clearly defines the difference among societal types that we have studied in the past few chapters.

The changes associated with the industrial revolution dramatically transformed the technologies, economies, social structures, political systems, and religions of various nations. The center of the first industrial revolution was in Europe. However when taking a global perspective, anthropologists agree that this industrial revolution could not have occurred without substantial influence of many other non-Western regions of the world. These changes are referred to collectively as modernization.

One of the arguments for the development of the industrial revolution in Europe is that it benefited from the diffusion of ideas, technology, and resources, building on the agricultural societies that had gone before as well as trade and mercantilism.

The result was a growing global unity and the global diffusion of philosophical and practical knowledge leading to the scientific revolution. Thus, in a sense, Europe borrowed many ideas from the Middle East, Asia, and India, leading to its ascendancy with the transformation fueled by the industrial revolution.

In contrast to earlier societies, industrial societies use high amounts of energy and large quantities of fossil fuels. Industrial societies also experienced a demographic transition of decreased fertility and mortality rates. Urbanization became a normal feature of the industrial world. The division of labor became much more complex. Industrial economies consist of primary, secondary, and tertiary sectors with jobs increasingly located in the tertiary sector. The market economy developed out of this. Both capitalist and socialist systems developed in industrial societies.

One of the...