What were the positive and negative effects of the Industrial Revolution?


Quick Answer

The pros of the industrial revolution were that wealth increased overall, more people entered the middle class and quality of living increased for everyone as a result of technology. The cons include pollution, accidental death and overpopulated cities.

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Full Answer

The increased technology from the industrial revolution increased standard of living by lowering the cost of many basic products. Houses were built more effectively and with higher quality, transportation exploded exponentially with the advent of trains. It became much cheaper and easier to travel long distances over both land and sea.

All this increased wealth and standard of living meant that more people survived and moved to the cities to go after better work. Cities became highly populated, and these conditions created slums. Competition for work caused some workers to work too hard and in bad conditions. A lack of regulation meant that, in some cases, children were working 70 hours or more per week. The use of coal in factories spewed a large amount of pollution into the air and into rivers. Eventually governments introduced regulation into industrial complexes, and many of the poor working conditions improved noticeably and quickly. Regulations also curbed some of the pollution by factories as well.

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