Слике страница

(2) It made new class divisions

He was, thus, in a small way, a capitalist himself, just
as the farmer who owns his farm and his cattle is both
a capitalist and a worker. But when the invention of
machines and of steam power brought in factories, it
was clear that most men could not own factories. It
took a great deal of money to build and equip a factory.
Almost at once it came about that some men built
and managed factories while others worked in them for
wages. This made a new class division. We now com-
monly speak of employers and employees, or capitalists
and wage-earners. The first great influence of the In-
dustrial Revolution in America in this respect was not
in the factories but in the fields which grew cotton for
the factories. In the early history of the country,
there had been a few slaves, but they were mainly for
house-servants or laborers on small plantations. The
great demand for cotton after the invention of the new
machinery for carding, spinning, and weaving made it
very profitable to raise great fields of cotton in the
South. This made the use of slaves as farm laborers
far more profitable than it had been before. If it had
not been for this new demand, it seems very likely that
the slaves would have been gradually freed without
much opposition, for many of the prominent men of
the South were opposed to slavery. We may fairly say
that the Civil War, therefore, was in large measure
due to the Industrial Revolution.
The present problems of democracy and liberty which
are caused by this division between employers and em-
ployees are brought before us almost every day. Con-
flicts over wages are, of course, to be expected, but
sometimes we are led to fear that there is bitterness
between different classes much greater than would be
caused by a difference of opinion about wages. It is

a difference that goes deeper. It comes from the fact that the two classes do such different things that they do not understand each other. The working people tend machines and cannot help being affected to some degree by the nature and environment of machine work. The other class work in offices, they buy and sell, they wear different clothes, and think about different things. This difference in point of view which often makes it hard for one class to understand the other is increased by the way in which people live in cities. Our modern cities are also a product of the Industrial Revolution. They are built up largely around factories or railway centers, or near harbors. The workmen live near the factory. The business men live in districts out away from the smoke and noise. The children do not attend the same schools. The grown people do not often see each other. Neither half knows how the other lives. They might as well be a thousand miles apart. Still another division in our country has been brought about partly by the Industrial Revolution. This is the division caused by immigration. At the beginning we all spoke one language and came from Great Britain and Ireland with very few exceptions. Today we are a multitude of races, and we speak and read many languages. In the city of Chicago alone over forty different languages are spoken and in most of these languages newspapers are printed. The people of many of these nationalities naturally tend to live in large groups, so that in the great cities there are really separate sub-cities. A Polish city, a German city, a Bohemian city, a Jewish city, an Italian city, and many others may be found in the great cities of the

(3) It has promoted imperialism

country. Here is another problem for liberty and
democracy. -
A nation is a group of people with unity of race
or tradition or feeling which enables them to live to-
gether under a common government. An empire usually
means a number of races, peoples, and perhaps nations,
under a single government. Frequently in modern
times, it means that a number of rather less highly
civilized people are ruled by a central power which
is more highly civilized. The great example of an
empire is the British Empire. This began with the
British islands; it grew by the colonies in America, in
Australia, in South Africa, but it grew also by the
conquest of India and Egypt and many smaller coun-
tries. In almost all cases there was first some
trade between England and these other countries,
which was followed by some method of govern-
ment designed to protect the traders in their dealings
with the natives. The Industrial Revolution began in
England and made it possible to manufacture great
quantities of cloth and other articles more cheaply
than before. It was natural to attempt to trade with
peoples all over the world in order to sell them these
new goods, and in this way country after country was
added to the British Empire. The Dutch, in a similar
way, built up an empire over the islands of the East
Indies. These empires began before the Industrial
Revolution, but in the nineteenth century the British
Empire developed very rapidly, and during the latter
part of the century the French and German empires
also showed rapid expansion. Rivalry between these
different empires and between the Balkan states has
been a great feature in bringing on the world war.
But even before this it made one great problem of

liberty and democracy. For since, in these great empires, certain parts were not of the same language or as highly civilized as other parts, the question became more and more serious, Should they be kept under the government of the more highly civilized power or should they be allowed to govern themselves? Democracy says that all governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. How can this be reconciled with imperialism? The United States has had to face that problem in the case of the Philippine Islands, but it is going to be compelled to consider it also in world affairs, if the United States is to be drawn more and more into the great problems of world peace and world coöperation.


Other colonists



upon this continent was conceived in liberty. And this was natural, for it was the love of liberty in various forms which brought many of the original colonists to America. Some came to seek religious freedom. Of those who came to Plymouth after first fleeing to Holland, Bradford writes:

T HE new nation which our fathers brought forth

They could not long continue in any peaceable condition, but were hunted and persecuted on every side, so as their former afflictions were but as fleabitings in comparison of these which now came upon them. For some were taken and clapt up in prison, others had their houses besett and watcht night and day, and hardly escaped their hands; and ye most were faine to flye and leave their howses and habitations, and the meanes of their livelehood.

Seeing themselves thus molested, and that ther was no hope of their continuance ther, by a joynte consente they resolved to goe into ye Low Countries, where they heard was freedom of religion for all men.

Others of the colonists came largely to find a better

opportunity than the Old World afforded them. They

did not think especially about civil or political liberty,

nor in fact about government at all. But when they

found themselves in a wilderness, thousands of miles

from the home country, they were soon forced to settle many matters for themselves.

« ПретходнаНастави »