Thefirst industrial revolution resulted in a rapid movement of people tourban areas (More, 2000). Changes in farming and high demand forworkers in urban areas prompted individuals living in the countrysideto move to towns. Consequently, small towns surrounding coal and ironmines mushroomed into cities overnight. New social classes alsoemerged: the middle and working class. The middle class took overoperations in factories, railroads, and mines their lifestyle wasmuch more comfortable when compared with that of the working class(More, 2000).
Variousfactors, during the industrial revolution, came together to bring tobear the rise of capitalism (Moore, 2016). One of these factors wasmechanical inventions such as the steam engine, which proliferatedthe scale and rate of manufacturing. Also, the workings of theBritish economy, which for an extended period was characterized byspecialization and trade, contributed to capitalism. Different areasin Britain concentrated on producing different kinds of goods for theinternational market. Thus, efficient producers could always find amarket for their cheaper commodities. Entrepreneurs who came up withnew inventions, similarly, amassed vast fortunes.
Theindustrial revolution resulted in permanent changes in the Britishsociety (Modern , 2016). Workers, owners (capitalists),and the government reacted variously to the ills of the revolution.Initially, government and owners assumed that market forces wouldcorrect these ills without intervention, but this happened on rareoccasions. When the government reacted, it did so with a bias to theowners. For example, the government rejected the proposal by workersto implement a minimum wage bill. Consequently, communism gainedpopularity among the uneducated and the have-nots. Workers andgovernment critics reacted creatively, for instance, by organizingsociety and work differently or by rebelling. However, the Britishgovernment and the capitalists responded swiftly and implementedpolicies that favored workers.
Thepremise behind capitalism is the desire to make a profit (Jahan &Mahmud, 2015). Capitalists focus on maximizing their interestswithout considering those of the receiving party. Communism,conversely, focuses on the benefit of the whole community, as opposedto personal interests (Holmes, 2009). Also, capitalism encouragespeople to own tangible assets such as houses and land, in addition tointangible assets like stocks and bonds (Jahan & Mahmud, 2015).Communism requires the masses to share the wealth of the nationcommunally (Holmes, 2009).
Holmes,L. (2009). Communism. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Jahan,S. & Mahmud, A. (2015). What Is Capitalism?. Retrieved fromhttps://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2015/06/pdf/basics.pdf
Modern. (2016). Untitled Document. Webs.bcp.org. Retrieved 28June 2016, fromhttp://webs.bcp.org/sites/vcleary/ModernWorldHistoryTextbook/IndustrialRevolution/responsestoIR.html
Moore,R. (2016). CyberJournal. Fantasticforum.com. Retrieved 28 June 2016,fromhttp://www.fantasticforum.com/cyberjournal/rkm_globalization2.html
More,C. (2000). Understanding the industrial revolution. London:Routledge.