[LMB] TSK - Echoes

Katherine Collett kcollett at hamilton.edu
Mon Jul 22 20:46:33 BST 2019


On Jul 22, 2019, at 2:34 PM, Eric Oppen <ravenclaweric at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> The thing was, the "dark satanic mills" in Victorian England WERE
> progress!  Prior to the Industrial Revolution, the surplus rural population
> had only a few options, and none of them were good.  After the factories
> were there, they could go and work in them.
> 
> Also, the Industrial Revolution made a lot of things more accessible to the
> poor, like making clothes cheaper.
> 
> Most of the sneering at factories was by people who were too rich to have
> any idea of what life was like for the real poor.  They would rhapsodize
> about how much better life was in the country.  Which it was, _if you owned
> land!_  Tenants, OTOH, were at the mercy of their landlords, and life in
> those quaint, picturesque country cottages was often pretty hellish.

Well, that’s true to some extent.  But my understanding is that until perhaps well into the industrial revolution, basically people came from the country to the cities and died there — that is, cities’ populations would have steadily decreased, if not for the constant influx of people from the countryside.  And people had longer lifespans if they stayed in the country.  So, life could be nasty, brutish, and short in the country or the city, but evidently worse in the city.

Katherine 


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