The Industrial Revolution's Influence on European Society

1375 Words3 Pages

In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries the Industrial Revolution in Europe had a significant influence on society. There were many changes in social classes and equality. The rise of the middle class had a momentous effect on the population of Europe and was a catalyst for many changes in the social makeup of the region. The influence of technology and electricity changed many aspects of social interaction and created a new class system. The migration of workers and the separation of the classes had political and social repercussions throughout Europe. Labor unions and political parties provided protection and a voice to many of the working class, and urbanization provided the stage for reformers to push for modernized cities. Women in this era also had distinct differences in their treatment and standing regardless of their social class. Two of the key social concerns of this new industrial era in Europe mainly revolved around the emerging social classes and the equality of women. With the advent of technology and the new capitalistic trends of second industrial revolution in Europe, the era became known as the “age of the middle classes” (719). During this time, the middle class was no longer a “revolutionary group” threatening the ruling class. They showed their power through spending and buying goods in what is referred to as consumer taste (719). The middle class during this era transformed and evolved into an assortment of groups. The most successful of the middle class were the business and bank owners, who lived in majesty and eventually surpassed many of the former ruling classes in the aristocracy. In this highest class, there was only a few hundred families that had such wealth and power. The small busine... ... middle of paper ... ... able to receive the right qualifications to get into most universities. “Women themselves were often hesitant to support feminist causes or expanded opportunities for females because they had been so thoroughly acculturated into the recently stereotyped roles.” (729) This mindset shows how dominating men could be to women during this time. Men feared that women would overcrowd the educated, professional placement in society and that it would change the role of women in the home. The second industrial revolution in Europe was a time of unprecedented change. The change in technology, education, and lifestyle had significant influence on social issues. Workers migrated to the cities, traditional family roles changed, and the new middle class gained influence through their buying power. The middle class was changing due to urbanization of the cities and migration

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