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Industrialization and Workers. What were working conditions like during the Age of Industrialization? How did workers respond to these conditions? Where do we draw the line between acceptable business practices and unacceptable working conditions? . The Growing Work Force.

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What were working conditions like during the Age of Industrialization?

  • How did workers respond to these conditions?
  • Where do we draw the line between acceptable business practices and unacceptable working conditions?
the growing work force
The Growing Work Force
  • 14 million people arrived in the US
  • 8 or 9 million move to cities bc of Factory work.
  • Few were African Americans
a hard life for the factory laborer
A Hard life for the Factory Laborer
  • Work was a family affair
  • Wager were so low no one person could earn enough to provide for entire family
  • Children left school at age 12 to get a job
  • Girls would work so brother could get education
  • If adult became ill or died children at the age of 6 or 7 had to bring in cash or go hungry
  • No Government programs
  • Charity had limited help
the industrial laborer at work
The Industrial Laborer at work
  • Ordinary work day was 12 hours long, 6 days a week
  • After 1900, a 10 hr day prevailed.
  • “If you don’t come in on Sunday, you can forget about Monday”
  • Good jobs were hard to come by
  • Piecework: employers paid workers a fixed amount for each finished piece they produced
  • Those who worked fastest and produced the most pieces earned the most money
  • Favored strong young workers
increasing efficiency
Increasing Efficiency
  • Frederick Winslow Taylor: developed time and motion studies to get workers to produce more in less time.
  • Make the most efficient use of all motion and activity
  • Workers hated because they imposed an ouside control on their work
  • Feared that an increased efficiency would result in layoffs
scientific management
Scientific Management
  • optimizing the way that tasks were performed and simplifying the jobs enough so that workers could be trained to perform their specialized sequence of motions in the one "best" way.
hardships at factory work
Hardships at Factory Work
  • Discipline was strict
  • Work was boring
  • Lighting and ventilation was poor
  • Fatigue , faulty equipment, and careless training resulted in frequent fires and accidents.
  • 675 to 200 today
  • No workers compensation
impact on women and children
Impact on Women and Children
  • Women were excluded from highest paying jobs
    • Women operated simplest machines
    • No chance for advancement
  • Children also suffered
    • 5% of industrial labor force
    • Their wages meant the difference between going hungry or having food on the table
    • Growing children suffered
      • Unhealthful factories led to inadequate diets, and monotonous task stunted in both body and mind