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Industrialization and social change

Industrialization is defined as a shift from animate to inanimate source of power. Industrialization is the rise of factories and use of machinery in the production of goods first occurred in England in the late 1700s and Arnold Toynbee referred to the particular time period as Industrial Revolution. Industrialization led to following changes in the social set-up:

Occupational shifts – As the society became more industrialized the labor force became smaller in proportion. Occupational patterns made a shift from agriculture to industry.

From ascriptive to achievement-based division of labor- Communal and family division of labor gave way to scientific division of labor.

High division of labor and opportunity for mobility- Due to division of labor, stratification increased and more opportunities of social mobility also opened up.

Changing power structure- with the decline of estate system in Europe and the rise of capitalism, power equations changed. Land no longer remained as a dominant source of power and instead industry and trade emerged as new sources of power.

New forms of conflict- Trade Unions came into existence and with them lock outs, labor mobilization became the mode of class struggle.

Demand for skilled job and education changes- Education as an agent of social change also gets a boost as it could lead to better skill development.

Changing family structure- Industrialization required mobile family and it led to the emergence of nuclear family.

Growth of new ideas – Industrialization led to the growth of new ideas like Marxism and socialism.

Improved standard of life – Industrialization led to more jobs and prosperity as the income gradually increased. More facilities ensured a better standard of living. Communication improved and production process became more efficient.  

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