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GGRA03H3 Lecture Notes - Industrial Revolution, Price Revolution, Unemployment Benefits

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Andre Sorensen

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Week 3 – The Industrial City
- 19th cent. Profound change in way people thought about cities as environments
- For industrial cities to function without destroying their inhabitants (city
residents) it is needed to manage public investments in infrastructure
- Before most infrastructure was provided by private sectors and then given to
- Urban crisis of the 19th cent. Exposed that this was not a viable way to sustain
- The big change was realizing this public investment was necessary
- A lot of institution that shape how cities work today was established then
- Amount of investment in Toronto, there are major construction occurring (300
jobs atm)
Industrial revolution
- It started in England, Scotland, in the early 18th cent. With increasing use of coal
and steam engine
- It was gradual (technological advances)
- The second half of the 19th centaury when all of this new technology and
processes and large pool of capital spreads around the world and transforms cities
- Big changes: new technology ( there was a capcity to produce more goods than
ever before, new energy sources such as coal to drive production line and steam
- Urbanization was another process of industrialization
- Increasing role of capitalism
- Expansion of global markets
Transformation of production
- There was ability to produce on a larger scale and for lower cost
- Dramatic price revolution in the 19th cent. Especially with steel (machines,
- Drop in prices allowed greater access to a huge range of goods (such as industrial
machinery, invention of weaving, textile manufacture etc)
- Textile dropped to a fraction of the cost
- Food prices dropped to because it was now getting shipped around
- Prices revolutions based on global trade and mass production
- Huge expansion of wealth, the increasing pool of capital in centers of Europe and
N.A based on shipping less cost goods around the world
- in the end of the 19th centaury the share of goods that were traded were higher
than ( more free markets in 1890 and greater shares of trade around the world then
compared to today) this is when globalization started.
Transformative technologies
- Railways operated
- Integration in the world and rapid transportation of goods
- Shipping costs dropped allowing global market access by most efficient producers
- These huge industries required 1000’s of people
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- They used a lot of people because technology was more basic
- There is a push from rural areas because of mechanization (bigger tractors, more
effective ways of harvesting)
- People in rural areas were unemployed
- Cities as places were transformed by this massive change
- Not by the number of people but who was living in cities and how they made their
- Before revolution it was elites and merchants (merchants were manufacturing in
- In return for work you were given food and shelter
- Factories became bigger and the economy was organized through markets
- Instead of accommodations (food and shelter) people were buying things on open
- These were fundamental drivers of changing cities
Emergence of Capitalism
- Becoming a better way of organization
- More processes were regulated through markets (housing, education, food supply
- This was the period of a market oriented society
- The emergence of capitalism in the sense of industries were profitable
- Churches were built into neighbourhoods (community infrastructures)
- Club houses, YMCAs etc. different kinds of provisions created without markets
Key Concepts
- Cities are fundamentally different after the 19th cent
- Increased role of capitalism
- Working population were supplied through price mechanism
Urban crisis
- Urban population in Europe doubles
- This is associated with increase in urban poverty
- There were no public services (public education, public transportation,
employment insurance)
- There was housing crisis
- The poorest people (60% of people) the housing market did not function to
provide standard of housing that was acceptable
- Hall (2002) explains the gruesome qualities of houses in London, New York etc in
19th centuary
- Overcrowding, collapsing stairs, people living in rookeries, casual use of spaces,
no toilets and space, no sewers
- People had little money to spend on housing,
- People realized to having housing for poor people, there needed to be another way
of investing in housing
- Charities and the role of the state to help these people ( public housings etc)
- Housing was a big problem then
- Water supply was another problem
- Wells became insufficient
- Repeated cholera epidemics in Europe
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