The British (and as far as I know all first world
countries) industrial revolution actually started with an agrarian revolution
, The agrarian revolution left a lot of countrysiders landless so they moved to towns (and later cities) in search of jobs, conurbations were also made possible by the increase of food production.
At the same time there was also a transport revolution which saw transport change from horseback, through canals to railways. Also, it should be noted that it was only now that Britain dicovered how to make paved roads, only 1700 years after the Romans had come over and shown us (when they retreated we seemed to forget how to do it) but (unlike the romans) we still haven't to this day worked out how to make a road straight.
these two revolutions were what made the industrial revolution possible. An influx of people, a surplus of food and reliable transport allowed the first factories to appear in the cities, often using near slave labour as worker's rights hadn't been invented yet, and were powered at first using waterwheels but later using steam engines.
The fourth revolution to occur at the same time was the medical revolution. The death rate dropped dramatically as medicine made incredible advances. Before the revolutions the world still didn't know about the inside of the human body (it was considered unethical to cut up a cadaver but by the end of the 19th century germs had been discovered by Louis Pasteur and viral vaccination was introduced by Edward Jenner. Anesthetics had been invented, namely chloroform and nitrous oxide, the former was allegedly discovered by a group of British scientists who sniffed various chemicals until they found themselves lying under a table. And amputations were no longer performed by the local barber. All of these things creating a profession where the best surgeons had skilled hands instead of big biceps, a sharp saw and a mean right hook. The drop in deaths was remarkable and caused a sudden increase in population which did not subside until the end of the 19th century when the populace started to have less children. This is commonly held as the end of the industrial revolution. It was not until now that the working classes were given voting rights and laws were brought into place to create better working conditions. The name given to this period of development by anthropologists is a demographic transition, a phase that the third world is now going through.
: I do not quite understand what your argument is here:
If you are arguing that the improvements in medicine predated the industrial revolution then you are definitely wrong. Louis Pasteur
did not create his 'Germ theory of Disease' until the mid 19th century and infectious disease declined at a similar time, e.g. Edward Jenner
discovered his vaccine
in 1796 and in the process created a new word: virus
. The case you describe of the guy who removed the pump handle must also have occured in the mid 19th century as Cholera only became an epidemic
following the mass migration of the people to the cities and the working classes using communal water pumps and toilets (often placed next to each other in the courtyards of the cheap buildings called 'tenements'.
If you are arguing that the population became immune to diseases such as smallpox
then yet again I assure you that you are mistaken as they are all controlled by vaccines although cholera becomes a non-entity
with good sanitation
which brings me to my next point:
If you are arguing that it was not the medical revolution
alone but also the sanitational revolution
that lowered the death rate then I agree with you whole heartedly and I admit that it was my mistake to overlook this factor but I do not have enough information on this aspect to create a decent enough writ-up about it.
Finally, If you are trying to say that the advances in medicine
have made no improvement to our lives and are just there as a placebo
when we 'face the agony and terror of disease', then the next time you have an illness that you cannot cure by common sense (rabies
is a good one) come visit me and I will say 'God bless you', apply 10 leech
es to suck out the 'bad blood' and then hacksaw off your right leg with no anesthetic, If the rabies doesn't kill you then the gangrene