Chapter 5 The Age of Industrialisation
Explain the following :
(a) Women workers in Britain attacked the Spinning Jenny.
(b) In the seventeenth century, merchants from towns in Europe began employing peasants and artisans within the villages.
(c) The port of Surat declined by the end of the eighteenth century.
(d) The East India Company appointed gomasthas to supervise weavers in India.
(a) The Spinning Jenny was invented by James Hargreaves in 1764. This machine speeded up the spinning process and reduced labour demands. By the use of this machine, a single worker could make a number of spindles, and spin several threads at n time. It simply meant that as a result of this machine, many weavers would be left without any job and became unemployed. It was this lea: of unemployment which —ace women workers, who survived on hand spinning. began attacking the new machines.
(b) The earlier phase of industrialization in which large scale production was carried out for the international market not at factories but in decentralised units.
(i) Huge demand: The world trade expanded at a very fast rate during the 17th and 18th centuries. The acquisition of colonies
was also responsible for the increase in demand. The town producers failed to produce the required quantity.
(ii) Powerful town producers:
- The town producers were very powerful,
- The producers could not expand the production a: will. This was because in the towns, urban crafts and trade guilds were powerful. These were associations of producers that trained craftspeople, maintained control over production, regulated competition and prices, and restricted the entry of new people within the trade.
(iii) Monopoly rights: The rulers granted different guilds the monopoly right to produce and trade in specific products It was therefore difficult for new merchants to set up business in towns. So they turned to the countryside.
(iv) New economic situation in the countryside: Open fields were disappearing in the countryside and the commons were being enclosed. Cottagers and poor peasants who were earlier depended on common lands became jobless So when merchants came around and offered advances to produce, peasants households eagerly agreed.
(c) (i) Most of the European companies had huge resources, so it was very difficult for the Indian merchants and traders to face the competition.
(ii) The European companies were gaining power by securing a variety of concessions from the local courts.
(iii) Some of the companies got the monopoly rights to Dade.
All this resulted in the decline of the old ports of Surat and Hoogly through which local merchants had operand. Exports from these ports fell dramatically, the credit that had financed the earlier trade began drying up. and the local bankers slowly went bankrupt.
(iv) In the last years of the seventeenth century, the gross value of -race that passed through Sura: had been t 16 million. By the 1740s. it had slumped to 3 million rupees.
(v) With the passage of time. Surat and Hoogly decayed. Bombay (Mumbai), and Calcutta (Kolkata) grew.
(d) (i) Monopoly right : Once the East India Company established political power, it asserted a monopoly right to trade.
(ii) New system: After establishing monopoly over trade :t proceeded to develop a system of management and control that would eliminate competition, control costs, and ensure regular supplies of cotton and silk goods. This it did through a series of steps.
(iii) Appointing Gomasthas: The Company tried to eliminate the existing traders and brokers connected with the doth trade, and establish a more direct control over the weavers. It appointed a paid secant called the Gomostha to supervise weavers, collect supplies, and examine the quality of cloth.
(iv) System of advances: To have a direct control over the weavers, the company- started the system of advances. Once an order was placed, the weavers were given loans to purchase the raw material for their production. Those, who took loans had to hand over the doth they produced to the Gomastha. They could not take it to any other trader.
(v) Use of power: The places where the weaver refused to cooperate the Company used its police. At many places, weaver was often beaten and flogged for delays in supply.
Write True or False against each statement:
(a) At the end of the nineteenth century, 80 percent of the total workforce in Europe was employed in the technologically advanced industrial sector.
(b) The international market for fine textiles was dominated by India till the eighteenth century.
(c) The American Civil War resulted in the reduction of cotton exports from India.
(d) The introduction of the fly shuttle enabled handloom workers to improve their productivity.
Explain what is meant by proto-industrialisation.
The parly phase of industrialization in which large-scale production was carried out for the international market not at factories but in decentralised units.