Social Institutions: The Economy
Historical and Economic Changes
1. Pre-Colonial United States: Hunting and Gathering and Horticultural Societies
Pre-sixteenth-century Native Americans with 2 million to 10 million people
Hunting and gathering socieites
Highly mobile, relocating for food and weather conditions
Division of labor revolved around survival (men hunted, women cooked)
Based on domestication of animals, farming, and generating a surplus of resources
More permanent settlements and greater diversification of labor because different types of workers were all necessary to the economy
2. Agricultural Revolution
Agricultural Revolution: the social and economic changes, including population increases, that followed from the domestication of plants and animals and the gradually increasing efficiency of food production.
Began with horticultural societies
Better farming and ranching techniques allowed larger groups to thrive and remain in one location for longer periods of time
Lasted for many centuries, but increased in 18th century with new innovations in farming and animal husbandry invention of new types of plows and mechanized seed spreaders new techniques of crop rotation, irrigation, and selective breeding
Encouraged stratified labor force
Division of labor fell largely along race, gender, and class lines
Many Southern plantations were farmed by black slaves brought from Africa.
White men were usually owners of land and small businesses while white women were usually household managers.
3. Industrial Revolution
Industrial revolution: the rapid transformation of social life resulting from the technological and economic developments that began with the assembly line, steam power, and urbanization
Began in England with the invention of the steam engine in 1769, which was first used to power machinery, starting with the manufacture of textiles.
By end of 18th century, this spread to United States and other nations (manual labor to machine manufacturing)
By the 19th century, steam-powered ships and railways, the internal combustion engine, electrical power generation, and new tools and appliances were introduced.
By the end of 1800s, modern corporation had emerged: a business that could manage a range of activities across geographic regions.
With this shift, many people migrated into cities from rural areas in search of work.
Great influx of immigrants, primarily from Europe.
Densely populated neighborhoods sprang up to accommodate the masses.
Wage labor replaced the household subsistence model of agricultural society.
Industrialized economy increased stratification of the workforce along class, race, and gender lines.
Wealthy white families owned means of production
Men were in workplace while the women ran the household
Middle class worked in managerial professions
For poor families, women and children joined the workforce
The industrial economy revolved around the mass production of goods, aided by use of the assembly line in the manufacturing process.
Attributed to Henry Ford, who in 1913 used it to manufacture automobiles in Michigan. more mechanized and more routine driven process on assembly line, each worker would do one or two specific tasks over and over again workers disliked the assembly line because it was boring and unsafe, exhausting working conditions
Industrial revolution changed lives of workers.
More discoveries in science and medicine that led to increased life expectancy and decreased infant mortality many people had access to dependable food and water sources and some form of health care.
Laws gave protections to workers
More trained and educated workers
Growing population became a market for the mass-produced goods it was manufacturing.
Cannot make own food and clothes now, so must purchase them with the wages they earned
New forms of communication (telegraph, telephone, transcontinental railroad).
4. Information Revolution
Information Revolution: the…