Monday, November 30, 2009

Eiffel Tower

This is a picture of the Eiffel Tower being built in Paris in 1887. As you see in this picture this is just as the tower was going up. It took two years until completed and it was built by Gustave Eiffel. This was just part of the world fairs and was not intended to stay up forever. As you can see in this picture Paris was not as hopping as it is today and the Eiffel tower has something to do with the tourist in PAris.

Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty was shown on October 28th, 1886. The tower was a gift from France, originally named: "Liberty Enlightening the World". The statue stands at Liberty Island in New York. At the time, President Grover accepted this gift as a monument to celebrate 100 years of American Independence.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tokugawa and Meiji Restoration- Digging Deeper

Read 1 and blog about how a specific area interacted with European forces. What were colonizing motives? How did the people being colonized respond?

Prior to U.S. Commodore Matthew Perry's arrival, Japan was governed by a shogun, or military ruler, who was a descendant from the Tokugawa family. They were a a largely influential family in Japan's history due to the fact that they acted "in the name of a revered but powerless emperor." (page 578, Ways of the World) The expectation of this shogunate was to at all costs protect Japan from the return of civil war with 260 daimyos, or rival feudal lords.
The shoguns were able to provide Japan over two centuries of peace, thanks to their own military power and political skills. In order to stay colonized and control the daimyo, they placed strict regulations on internal travel and communication and "required the daimyo to spend alternate years in the capital of Edo, leaving their families behind as hostages during their absence." (page 578, Ways of the World) However, due to the fact that by default the daimyo were the more powerful ones, they began acting as if they were independent states. They built separate military forces, law codes, tax systems, and currencies. Tokugawa Japan had no national army, however, along with no uniform currency and hardly any central authority at the local level, meaning they were "pacified...but not really unified." (page 578, Ways of the World) In order to further colonize the country, the Tokugawa placed strict and detailed guidelines for governing the occupation, residence, dress, hairstyles, and behavior of the four status groups, ranked hierarchically. The Japanese social structure was divided into four groups:
1) samurai
2) peasants
3) artisans
4) merchants

As time went on, Japan needed to make sure that it could stay united and colonize its people. As the substantial burst of economic growth, commercialization, and urban development came to be, peace is what came along with it. Japan was becoming on of the world's most urbanized countries. Education was becoming of prime importance as well, with 40% of men and 5% of woman able to read and write, which was a huge improvement. The growth of importance of education was subconsciously building Japan a remarkable industrial foundation and in turn colonized the people and the future of Japan.
The samurai, who once lived only by the sword, were broadening their horizons as well. They discovered the importance of business and commerce and drifted from the long held tradition of honoring the warrior code. They still ranked highest on the social pyramid, however were not as educated in the business aspect of society. This led to some anarchy, for now the social status were experiencing some disorder. Peasants began moving to cities and taking the jobs of artisans or merchants. According to a decree of 1788, the peasants "have become accustomed to luxury and forgetful of their rain..." (page 579, Ways of the World) This led to the shogun declaring that all luxury items must be avoided by the peasants, which was, like many others decrees, ignored.
The attempt at colonizing Japan, some successful and others not, led to widespread corruption. Unfortunately, the shogunate were losing control.
However, this the shogun's downfall led to the Meiji restoration. At this time, "the country's new rulers claimed that they were restoring to power the young emperor, then a fifteen-year-old boy whose throne name was Meiji, or Enlightened Rule." (page 580, Ways of the World) Now that the shogunate were eliminated, the new patriotic leaders of the country made clear their goals-- "to save Japan from foreign domination, not by futile resistance, but by a thorough transformation of Japanese society, drawing upon all that the modern West had to offer." (page 580, Ways of the World) Knowledge became a greatly influential aspect to the countries transforming society, and was greatly motivated "so as to strengthen the foundations of imperial rule." (page 580, Ways of the World)

All in all, Japan underwent multiple changes throughout the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. The shoguns held power for an extended amount of time, and were able to colonize the country for as long as they could. The social pyramid experienced a bit of a shaking up, if you may, and the samurai's lifestyle underwent a modernized makeover. Corruption was slowly taking over the Tokugawa regime, and Japan experienced a bit of a rough patch regarding a visit from Commodore Perry in hopes of opening more ports for trade. The Meiji restoration was soon after underway, slowly but steadily attempting to repair the areas needing mending in Japan. As a whole, Japan did a sufficient job in keeping itself colonized and the changes that took place did have both a positive and negative effect on society, however never posing a drastic transformation.

Tells of Atrocity in Belgian Congo

In the reading (599-600) it talks about the outrages being widely publicized in Europe. So I thought I would look for one of those articles, and I found one. It is from the New York Times in 1909. It talks about a little 2 year old boy from Congo, and how important he was and how everyone on the ship wanted to shake his hand. It also sort of shows how long it took people to hear about what was happening around the world because we now know that by 1908 Leopold's reign of terror was already over.
Here is the Link.

Opium War/Anglo-Chinese War

In the 1830's the British had a huge drug cartel, one bigger than any drug cartels today. They were growing Opium/Poppies in India and having it shipped out to them by the East India Trade Company. The company shipped lots of opium which were then traded for Chinese goods and other things like that. This massive amount of opium being distributed created a country filled of drug addicts. In 1836 trafficking became illegal but the British would just bride the officials. The amount of opium in China was getting smaller and smaller. The addicts were getting sadder and sadder. This period of time was called the Great Tragedy and to help ease the pain of not having the drugs, the emperor made opium illegal. The English were still sending ships trying to get the drugs into the country. China decided that they would just go out and force the ships to turn around and not bring the drugs into their country. Well, this idea worked but gave the English another idea, they could just bring warships with them on their trafficking trips. Now the Chinese warships were nothing compared to the English, with their gunships. The British would go back and forth on the coast firing at forts and fighting on land. Finally the Chinese were forced to agree to the Treaty of Nanking, which made it so that all British people on Chinese soil committing a crime would be subjected to British law. No restrictions were placed on the British trade into China, so the drug trafficking doubled, and the opium levels grew once again.
I learned everything off of this site. Here!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Economies of Coercion

During the colonial era, there was much more demand for labor for local projects and building infrastructure. Also, labor was needed to harvest natural products. Of course this labor had to be unpaid. In Africa, specifically the Congo, many natives were forced to collect rubber for Belgium (Leopold II). This was required by law, that you were required to work 10-12 days a year without pay. Although it doesn't seem that bad, they were treated poorly. It escalated to the point where if they could no longer retrieve rubber, Leopold and his men would go to the villages and kill innocent people. Eventually, many people got word of this, causing Belgium to take control over the Congo. This in turn ended Leopold's "reign of terror."

In the Netherlands, a similar system was put into place. Peasants were required to cultivate 20% or more of their land in cash crops to pay for taxes. These crops were sold to the government at low rates and then sold off to the rest of the world making a lot of profit. Once again, if people could not cultivate their land, they would be lashed and often starved.

I had always thought that Africans were only taken out of Africa and then forced into labor. I did not know that there were enough valuable natural resources within Africa for Europeans to force labor there as well. In the end, throughout history nations have taken advantage of African people in order for cheap labor. Unfortunately this led to massacres of thousands of people.

Strayer 566-569

After reading about China and Europe's conflicts over Opium and the beginning of the first Opium War, I felt as though the entire situation could have been avoided.

Based on what I read, it was obvious that Britain took complete advantage of China after the Opium war. Britain, with its high ego because of their new military, decided to wage war against China. Soon after, China signed Britain's treaty which was completely in favor of Britain and allowed them to open numerous ports in China and impose tariffs on goods. The same thing happened after Britain won the second Opium War. It is clear that China let Europe push them around, taking control of the ports and allowing Europeans and other foreigners to live in China under their own laws. China, previously a very powerful nation, has fallen at the hands of Europe and their weakened government was the result of Imperialism. Why was China so feeble? Why did they let Europe and other nations such as France and Japan take advantage of them and control of areas of their country? Most likely, China underestimated Europe's newfound power, especially after the effects of the Industrial Revolution.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Edward Blyden

Edward Blyden was the most influential proponent of identifying the differences between Africana and European cultures. Some of his views consist of race and culture. He stated that each race is different, but that it had its own distinctive benefaction that it gave to the world and its population. For example, Africans had taken on a different approach of life compared to the Europeans. As the Europeans were so eager to get ahead in life by their materialistic and individualistic ideas, the Africans were happier being more spiritual and cooperative. Both of their missions were contrasted sharply because they were focused on two completely different things. Blyden figured this out and annonced his views to the world and people realized they could do the same things that the Europeans could just in a different manner. As a result, hundreds of thousands Africans contributed to World War I, where they were faced to coexist with the Europeans. People thanked Blyden for his intelligence and later on people began to called the Africans a "tribe" instead of a race because they felt it was a better word to describe them as.

The Wage Labor

Working for Europeans was always the way to obtain money in these economies. In order to get money, they had to do some manual labor at a very small price. This labor is called the wage labor. Money earned from a man doing the job himself. Some of this wage labor was brought to many different parts of Africa and Asia. It was populated the most in the continents because African and Asian people were known to look up to the "whites", also known as Europeans, and do whatever they were told. Some types of wage labor included plantations, mines, construction sites, and building homes. These labor sites were located in many countries in Africa. For example, Trinidad, Fiji, Malaysia, Ceylon, and South Africa had very many plantations where the Africans could work at. Some ideas of labor were moving extremely heavy sacks of tea into a drying house so they could be exported to different parts of the world. Mines were probably the largest area of wage labor because over the 19th century, they found 55% of the world's tin. As a result, the Africans and Asians got a lot better at what they did and finally began to get higher paying jobs and less hours on the job. However, they would never fully be as rich as the Europeans.

Citation: The Ways of the World by Robert W. Strayer

Colonializing in the 1800s

European Colonial Empires were very different than many of the other colonial empires in the nineteenth century. One of the very strongest differences was the race factor. There was something called "scientific racism" where they based racism off the studies of all different types of races. As a result, whites were the most dominant race and were seen as a higher being to the other races. The Africans called the white people "bwana" which means master in swahili, and the Europeans or "white" people called the africans "boy." Another difference was the seperation of the Africans from the Europeans. Most colonial empires didn't supply seperate homelands for the black and white people, so it brought them closer together as a whole. These new European colonial empires demanded to have separate homelands, educational systems, and even public facilities. Furthermore, European Colonial Empires were liked more than the original colonial empires and therefore, people adapted to their empires and that is how scientic racism began. It lasted until the end of the 19th century and was a horrible era for everyone.

Citation: The Ways of the World by Robert W. Strayer

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Strayer 528-529

These next few blogs are a bit late but I'd still really appreciate your comments, thanks.

After reading this section (and after completing the unit :O), it's pretty accurate to say that the most important things that came from the industrial revolution are the technologies created such as the spinning jenny, power loom, steam engine and cotton gin as well as factory systems that were brought into play. Unfortunately, these machines only benefitted factory owners, allowing them to produce more and make more profit. However, the actual laborers were had a much harder lifestyle and made very little money in comparison to factory owners. This is why many families had to send their children off to work in order to make as much money to support them as possible.

Present industrial feats occur all the time with the advancement in technology. However, it is never and probably will never be on the same scale as the Industrial Revolution was in Britain. This is because at that point in time, one invention after another surfaced, modernizing the country and world. Unfortunately, another industrial revolution will most likely not occur unless some sort of futuristic/alien (foreign) technology is created or discovered.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

African Women pg (204-205)

In the Strayer reading about Women in Africa it said that the women did a lot of the active work. Active work includes, farming, weeding, planting, harvesting, and taking care of the children of course. All women seem to have taken care of the children and still to this day, women are known for caring for children more then the men are. Men did more of the labor like building houses and clearing the land, but we are not going to discuss them in this blog.

Once the economy grew and the necessary of money was higher, the women's jobs different more then the men and became more separate. The women initially started the cotton crops so that they could have clothes for their families, but as the cotton need grew and the money started going for cotton the men took the crops from the women and were in control. In pre-colonial time the women worked a lot less then during the colonial time, because more work meant more money, and more money meant a better life. And all women were in it for better life, not just for them, for their family as well. Families were extremely important to African women because they really did not have that good of jobs and usually their jobs were dealt with around the house, or where the family was.

The Ethnic Identity of Africa

With the Europeans conquering Africa, the natives of Africa began to see that they had one common "enemy" in the white people. By establishing this enemy, there was development of unification all across Africa with the people now considering themselves a race. Even though there still were enemies within the tribes of Africa, the natives began to think of themselves as a seperate race from the White people. This was vital for the Africans to develop this sense of community and race, because through this connection, they had become united as a continent. This ethnic identity helped the Africans understand themselves and it was vital for the nations of Africa. By having this ethnic identity, the Africans began to start these "mini-revolutions" that would eventually expel the White people from Africa and would let the Africans live and thrive for themselves. The philosophers that started thes beliefs started what would become the common beliefs for the natives for many years to come.
Ways of the World Strayer

Education in the Colonial Era

In the Colonial Era, education was vital for awareness of the world and its surroundings. Education was not only to learn about the world around them, but also an escape from manual labor. It also gave the opportunity to be placed in better paying jobs. There were also cases where education was used for power control. As the Europeans went through Africa, they installed beliefs and ideas that helped them maintain power through education. Others were embracing European culture as well. Some would speak the language of France and also dress like them, and have weddings like them. This helped the development of Africa because of the fact that they ca “blend” in with the white people. By blending in, it would open up doors for the Africans, which would allow them to access European technology and philosophies. 

Race and Tribe

Towards the end of the 1800s, many African thinkers began defining "African identity." Before this mini-revolution, there were virtually no people on the continent who regarded themselves as Africans. People were often defined by their language, kinship, and their land of origin. One other way to define Africans was to contrast them with European cultures. The word "tribe" started appearing more and more.

As Europeans continued to overtake Africa, the Africans did the best they could to continue there traditions and keep their spirits alive. The British found that the Africans were easier to control if they separated them into different clans. This wasn't easy, though because the Africans usually just wanted to be able to live how they wanted, and not be split into certain sections of society. They would rather be one big community than a divided nation. However, they did not have much of a choice when the colonial government required people to identify what tribe they were a part of on things like applications for jobs and ID cards. Although they initially did not seem in favor of the whole idea of tribes, the Africans began to take a liking to the new system and found the labels useful, especially in areas were urbanization was happening very rapidly.

It was much easier to organize people when they were part of a tribe. In colonial colonies, people that were new to the city found themselves new "tribes" of people who spoke the same language, came from the same place, or worked in the same field. Another step in society came when people started to include themselves in more than one tribe. A man could be in a clan of factory workers at the same time he was in a group of people who all spoke the same language and lived on the same block.

Monday, November 23, 2009

divide and conquer

Christianity both divided some nations and was taken on widely in others. Africa wholehartedly adopted christianity as their religion. 50% of the Africans who weren't muslim identified as christian. The reasoning behind this was not only the tens of millions of missionaries that came to Africa, but the education opportunities that came with becoming part of this western religion. Mission schools were set up for Africans, which gave them opportunities to stray away from the merciless collonists and controling countries. In India, Christianity brought along a strong sense of community. However this feeling was because of the new unification of the HIndu religion. HInduism helped to unify many Indians while seperating them from Muslims. This created a mass division in India. This reminds me of the conflict right now in Israel and Palesine. Before the British interfiered, it was a pretty peaceful country, however with the British problems arose. After World War II many Jewish people no longer felt safe in Europe, with good reason, and so the British set up a country, a safe haven, for them which was called Israel. HOwever then two religions became were calling the exact same space home. In India, with England's introduction of the christian religion, India split into two religions, Muslim and Hindu. Then the British set up Pakistan which was supposed to be a safe haven for the Muslims. On the way to their new home, many many Muslims were killed by Hindus and vice versa. Meanwhile England stayed out of the conflict with both Israel as a new state and Pakistan as a new state.

Women in Africa

In the reading that I did last night,(604-605), Women were treated differently in certain time periods, and in certain regions of the world. For example before colonization, women had few work hours, because the families only did enough work to provide for their own families, but after, it all changed. As colonization took place, men started to plant a bunch of the cash crops such as cotton so they could trade, and market them, so the women were left with a huge plantation to work on. Hours for women changed from being forty six hours per week to being more than seventy. Men then started to move to different cities that were sometimes extremely far away just to seek money, so women then had full responsibility of the households. Of course women didn't want this and so they just stopped seeking husbands, and just turned to their families of birth. Women didn't always have it too bad. An example of this was that women in northern Nigeria started to get involved in small-scale trade and marketing, and they gained enough wealth to support even their husbands. Instead of the women asking the men for money, the men were now asking the women. Ultimately, in most parts of Africa women were treated unfairly.

According to the nineteenth-century chart, found in page 564 of Ways of the World, which depicts the “Progressive Development of Man”, identity is based on race. This chart shows nothing concerning women, so I don't think that western ideas played a huge role in the way women were treated in Africa. I believe that the own people of Africa created the situation they were in themselves because of the urge to get wealthy.


In the reading (pg 604-609), I read about how the European idea of education affected the colonial era. Europeans believed that education was a big key in success, like nowadays. This was caused by the Enlightenment era because people started to learn for themselves, making learning and education for the upper classes. Reading and writing was considered amazing because not many people had time to learn. That's one of the reasons why the colonized people from Africa and such were called uncivilized there was no system of writing or reading. After these areas got colonized there were some who were able to get a small education, in our perspective, because all they could do was read an write. In the book it mentions a man looking at his relative with awe because with a simple education you are able to rise in class. Africans were seen as the lowest they were called heathens, and barbarians but with a small education they were able to rise in class and they were able to make a decent living. It was a way for these people to escape laboring in fields, and they were able to have a family. In most rubber jobs they were not able to have families, they were deprived something as simple as a family. It survival of the fittest a Social Darwinism belief, the Europeans are at the top because they have an education, if you do not have an education you can't make it. Education was the path that only elite Africans and Asians were able to take but it was a path that had to be taken to escape the racism and the superiority of Europeans, not fully but partially.

Ways of the world by Robert W. Strayer (pg 604-609)

Education in the Colonial Era

People who were educated were in somewhat of a higher class. They didn't have to participate in the forced labor and they were given jobs with higher salaries like business firms. In the passage where a man talks about a boy he encountered, he describes him as "a young god" because of his "smart clothes" and "a beautiful bicycle." He claims that these wonderful aspects came from his education and knowledge of reading and writing. The man who encountered him says in the end of this passage that he wanted to have the stuff that this boy had, especially his bike, and so therefore he wanted education. This made me think of the education that we have today. Today education is still an advantage in society, the only difference is that education is available to more people now so it doesn't seem as big of a deal. But to people who dropped out of high school or who weren't given a chance to excel in school are at an extreme disadvantage when it comes to getting a job. This is sometimes what causes people to become homeless. They may not have been given as many opportunities for education as some have. We are at Menlo, a private high school that exposes us to many different subjects that many people aren't given the chance to experience. For example, World Religions. Not everyone is exposed to many different religions like the freshman class is at Menlo. Some may argue that it doesn't benefit them because they believe their religion and only that. But I think that it has given me many different view points of different cultures and it helped me to understand why people may do things like fasting and other traditions or ceremonies. To tie this back to the reading, education has made many improvements. Back then , a limited few were able to receive education, and it only enabled them to read and write. As I have said it was a big deal then because not very many people were able to receive it. Nowadays, people are able to go to schools from kindergarten to extra years of college like getting a PHD. Education has many many advancements and it has consistently stayed important and has been a disadvantage in people lives when they have not been educated.

Ways of the world by Robert W. Strayer (pg 604-609)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Forced Labor 599-600 Summary

In my reading, it talked about unpaid, forced labor during the colonial era, on public projects. Some examples are building railroads, constructing buildings, or transporting goods. In French Africa, natives were required to do statute labor for 10-12 days a year. this as greatly disliked, but continued until 1946. The most cruel and infamous examples of forced labor occurred during the early 1900s in the Congo, governed by Leopold II of Belgium. Villagers there were forced to collect rubber from the forrest, because of the great demand for bike tires and car tires. If they weren't successful, they were severely punished. Some were shot, some were dragged off with ropes around their neck, and some had different parts of their bodies removed. There is a picture on page 600 of two young boys whose hands were severed because of their village's lack to provide the required amount of rubber. Another instance of the forced labor was in Indonesia, in the 19th century. Peasants were required to devote 20 percent of their land to cash crops like sugar and coffee in order to meet their tax obligation to the state. The crops were then resold by the Dutch to the world market and was very highly profitable to the shippers, traders, citizens, and state. This highly benefitted the dutch economy and provided capital for their industrial revolution. But for the peasants it meant a double burden to the state and local lords. the demands along with the loss of land and exclusion from food production led to famines killing hundreds of thousands. the forced cultivation of crops was successfully and largely resisted in various places. A massive rebellion occurred in 1905 and ended the forced cultivation of cotton and other plants in many places.

Ways of the World By Robert W. Strayer

Indian Rebellion

Through 1857-1858 a milestone rebellion happened in India. A new catridge that had animal fat (cow and pig) all over it deeply offended both Muslims and Hindus. Hindus were very upset because cows are a sacred animal and Hindus find pigs disgusting. The two religions joined together to rebel against the oppresive british rule. This completely changd the reltaionship between Britain and India. Before there was the East India Company and they had a lose control over India, just making sure that they got what items were necessary for British export. After the British actually tried to change some aspects of Indian society based on their fear that another huge rebellion would come. Of course this was completely idiotic because by doing that, people were even more offfended and untrustworthy of the British.

Cooperation and Rebellion

This section in the book titled, “Cooperation and Rebellion,” has two main focuses, and those two are exactly as the title says, cooperation and rebellion. In these two focuses the two regions/countries that are involved are Europe, and India.


Even though the Colonial Rulers were thought as being above all other races, because they happened to be European, they were not able to do everything themselves. They needed the help of the locals, and the locals willingly helped them out. Locals had no other choice, because being allied to the Europeans was the only way out of their miserable lives. It provided them with the protection that they needed, and it gave them great wealth. As this started to increase, many Europeans saw the importance of education so private organizations, missionaries, ect., started to educate the people of their colonies. As a result, emerged a Western-educated class. People received better jobs, such as teachers, and clerks, and some even went on to being huge roles in society, such as lawyers, doctors and engineers.


While there was cooperation between people, there was also an opposition. The biggest opposition was the Indian Rebellion, which lasted for one year, 1857-1858. This rebellion started, because the military introduced a new type of cartridge that was smeared in cow, and pig fat. These two animals happened to be in some way religiously sacred to all of the people of India, so the Indians saw it as a way of the conquerors trying to make them Christian. Indian troops triggered this rebellion, and it quickly spread to much of India. This rebellion caused the Europeans to look down at the people with even more hate, and it completely ended the alliance that India had with Britan.

Oppressed People of Africa

Colonial Empires with a difference

The people in this section which are the people of Africa, were colonized because of the race differences between them and the Europeans. There was now a “High tide of scientific racism,” as it is said in the book. And the ruled were the Africans, and the rulers were the Europeans. Even the own people of Africa referred to the whites as “Bwana”(Swahili for master), while the Europeans referred to the Africans as “boy”, obviously establishing themselves as the higher class. If you were a colonial subject your education was also limited, and there was no way that you would obtain any kind of high rank. Africans were even starting to get everything separated from them in their own country, something known as apartheid. The Europeans made an industrial society based on the labor of only Africans, while limiting the social, and political integration of them. This broke the European policies of a democratic nation, because only a few people were allowed to be part of the government actions. This mad the colonies a sort of dictatorship that went unnoticed for a really long time. Unlike the people of India that had huge rebellions, the Africans didn't really have any sort of retaliation.

"Colonial Violence" pages 599-600

Because of the newly made Colonial States, people, or the natives were forced to participate in unpaid public labor for example working on the railroad or making buildings. In French Africa they were "legally obligated for statute labor" (Strayer 599). According to, statute labor is "a definite amount of labor required for the public service in making roads, bridges, etc., as in certain English colonies." The people were required to do these tasks and if they didn't they would be severely punished. In Congo, which appeared in my reading, the people were required to search for and collect rubber. Rubber was in high demand because of the bicycles and car wheels and so if the people were unable to come up with the required amount, they would be killed. A worker talks of his experience with this is says "when we failed and our rubber was short, the soldiers came to our towns and killed us. Many were shot, some had their ears cut off; others were tied up with ropes round their necks and taken away," and this clearly depicts the cruel acts that were inflicted in these people for trying their bests to fulfill the wishes of their "masters." This also shows the selfishness that the soldiers or "white men" had and that they had no respect what so ever for the workers. They didn't care what happened to them as long as they got their rubber. This is really awful to think about and to think that people would do such a thing. There is a picture in the textbook on page 600 that shows to boys who had their hands chopped off I think and it is justatrocious that that could be done to someone. I clearly can't relate to the authorities in this situation because I don't believe that you should inflict pain on others because they didn't supply you with enough of something. If they really needed or wanted it that bad then why didn't they just work and get it. It just doesn't make sense to me to punish others for their lack of satisfaction.

Information from:
Ways of The World by Robert W. Strayer (pages 599-600)

The Torture of Africa

During the control of Africa, by the Europeans, humans lost their morals. All the European countries that had control of provinces in Africa, forced the natives to work until they die. They could care less about the families they were tearing apart, the lives they were destroying, or the conditions of the natives. They just wanted a product that they could sell for money, even if all the resources were dry, they would force the natives to search every nook and cranny. This is an epitome of White Man's Greed, forcing people to work under them until they got what they wanted, and when all the people of the town were either not capable of working anymore, or dead, they would move on. What happened in Africa during this time period was just terrible and embarrassing for humanity. Because of Europeans actions in Africa, Africa is still recovering. The natives were never able to flourish or develop their land themselves and all the good resources were stolen by the whites, so now they have nothing to sell in the present day. The economy went under after the whites scrapped everything off of the continent, so the the governments were never able to afford vaccines and medicines for their people, so now they are feeling the repercussions of the white's actions. Even though the Europeans left Africa almost 100 years ago in some countries, they natives are still suffering.

Working Conditions

In the reading the Strayer book talked about the working conditions after the Europeans colonized Africa. The working conditions for these people were slave like they were paid very little and prices for housing and food were high, almost like the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. However these people differed because of their race they were thought to be inferior. With in the Industrial Revolution they were all European so that was a step up for them. But because these people are thought to be uncivilized they are lower than them and looked down upon. Because of low wages people had to crowd in to rooms just to be able to afford housing. Women were also given lower wages, meaning not only are they looked down upon and given low wages but they are also women which are more inferior. Men would have a tough time making a living but women would have it tougher and if they have a child it's even worse because they have not only one mouth to feed but 2 or 3 and so on. Also unlike the people from the Industrial Revolution they weren't able to rise in class, a worker could rise and have a decent living but a African would stay at the bottom. I think that the European Colonization is like the Industrial Revolution but worse. We still see this today in Africa and Asia they work like slaves for a small amount of money, and the jobs they work in mines are dangerous that they put their lives at risk everyday to live. Time has not changed much from the past and now, in these places they still have bad working conditions as 100s of years ago, and they haven't improved.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Colonial Empires

Reading my textbook section, I had a hard time figuring out what the motives were for the European people to colonize Africa. At first, I thought that perhaps the European colonists were power hungry and had large superiority complexes, thinking that they could go to any country and take whatever land that they wanted. This seems to make a lot of sense because the white men were usually referred to a bwana, which means master, and they usually called the African men "boys" no matter how old or young they were. They also drastically changed the culture of wherever they went, imposing racial stereotypes and attempting to create industries based on cheap African labor. They also imposed taxes and limited education for the Africans. However, there seems to be another motive, which would be collecting scientific information from the African populace. The more evident one seems to be the land hungry motive. The people being colonized did not respond very well. They attempted to revolt, but in the end, the European power was too great for them to overcome.

Colonization of Africa

European leaders from numerous places all over Europe had intense rivalries over the newly important land of Africa. They spent 25 years splitting up they land and at first, it seemed like this method would be successful. However, everyone just ended up fighting over the land again and things got very bloody. Some wars over certain parts of land even lasted decades, taking huge tolls on the military forces of each  territory. Not all negotiation were through fighting, though. There were still a good amount of peace treaties, but, predictably, a lot of the peace treaties ended up just stirring up another war when the territories realized that they didn't agree with the treaty after all.

After a while, when taking on huge empires in battle wasn't working anymore, military leaders began taking over territories village by village. Every once and a while a village would go down easy, but heavy resistance was encountered pretty much the entire journey. But no matter how hard it was to continue conquering land, many military powers continued to try to do so, no matter how great their losses were.

Africa and How it was Divided Up

While looking at the map of how Africa was divided up, I was curious as to why countries like France and the British were able to get the majority of Africa, and the central points. France even though they got mostly the Sahara desert in the central part of Africa, they did get and control access to the Red Sea, which was a majory port because of the fact that trading with the Muslim Empires could be accessed through that area. Also the British had control of Egypt and South Africa, both had major trade cities in both of these regions. Then there were nations like the Germans and Spanish, who were left with almost nothing. I was just curious about the process of how Africa was divided up, and why certain countries were able to get most of the major ports and parts of Africa. 

Japanese Shogun

Im going to go into detail about the shogun because they seemed interesting. The shogun or the shogunate was referred to a military leader of the Japanese armed forces. At one point in time, they had more power than the emperor and had control of the Samurai.  The Shogun rules as a dictator that rules all of Japan.Today, retired shogun that still have power and give advice to others is called a "Shadow shogun. A shadow shogun in Japanese is called yami shogun. Some shadow shogun are former prime minister Kakuei Tanaka and politician Ichiro Ozawa.

Colonization of Australia

The reading was very general and lacking in detail, so I don't know if there is a ton to blog about.

Colonizing of Australia:
The colonization of Australia was similar to that of North America, and not to contemporary patterns of conquest.

How they interacted with European Forces: It did not talk about this at all in the book, but online i found a source that said that the natives were friendly and hospitable at first, trading with the colonists for food, water, and supplies for survival, like axes and other various tools. Relations didn't become hostile until a few years later, when the Aborigines realized that their land and resources, along with their way of life was being disrupted and threatened by the colonists, so they began to resist and attack the British.

Colonization Motives: It also didn't talk about this at all, but online i found that there were two main reasons for the colonization. One reason was because they were going to use Australia as a penal colony, where they would dump all their criminals and unwanted people. They also felt that Australia was filled with vast expanses of land, and that the people their were godless, and didn't deserve, or truly want the continent.

Response to colonization: The natives were truly overwhelmed. They tried to fight back at first but were no match. They were greatly outnumbered. 75% of the natives there died of disease brought over by the British, and the remaining were tired and eventual gave up. The book says that by the end, the Aboriginal Australians only constituted only 2 percent of Australia's population. This is why they were truly overwhelmed.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


In the reading I found that Europeans were very ignorant in the ways that they treated the Africans and Indians. They felt that just because the Africans seemed native, they must be treated as lesser people. They wouldn't even allow the educated ones have any authority. I feel that if I were in the position of either the Indians or the Africans, I would be greatly offended because I don't necessarily need the knowledge the Europeans have to offer. I wouldn't even need to learn the languages that they speak. Just because their skin is a different color doesn't mean that the IQs will be different. There were even controversies over the idea that a well educated Indian man should have the right to be the judge of a white man's case. It's extremely racist and belittling of any other race on this earth. I almost wish that the Africans and Europeans could switch places for a second to show how everything is subjective in this scenario.

Britian's colonies in Africa

Since I did not like my reading...I am writing about a perspective of a British official that is in our book. 

In late 125, a British official spoke on what was occurring in Nigeria, "I shall of course go on walloping them until they surrender. It's rather piteous sight watching a village being knocked to pieces and I wish there was some other way, but unfortunately there isn't." 
After reading this quote, the first thing that came to my mind was the "scramble for Africa." Many countries had some colonies somewhere in Africa. This British official really speaks as a typical soldier because they must do what is necessary for the goodness of their country. Breaking down the poor villages is the worst sight, but this soldier comments about how there is no other option to conquer these lands without destruction.

The "Scramble for Africa" pages 592-593

Interaction with European Forces:

The European powers all raced to rule or conquer parts of Africa. In about 25 years, they conquered most if not all of Africa and the European colonies all came out with large portions of Africa and they were surprised with how fast that process went. They divided the country among themselves. Afterwards, they fought to decide who got what. And problems arrived when there were parts of Africa that were separate from the big cities or states. The societies that were fairly unorganized in "formal state structure" were the ones that the European powers argued about because it was unclear about where they "officially" belonged to.

Colonizing Motives:

Missionaries were coming to Africa to go and help them because they thought that the Africans were not as "well off" as they were. So, missionaries went to Africa to save the "people in poor countries." They also thought that they could explore the new area and so that they could discover new things and possibly retrieve some new raw materials and resources to be able to make more products to sell. They also wanted to be the "cool" country and have pride in the country by having the best one possible. They wanted to have strong nationalism to make them seem like "the best."

People's Reactions:

Obviously the people that were previously living in Africa were not very happy with the fact that people were invading where they were living and those people were dividing up their "habitat" for them to keep and to control. But the natives did not have much of a chance to fight back with much impact because they did not have the latest and greatest technology and weapons like the Europeans did and so they ended up falling to the Europeans' control, sadly.

Below shows a map that illustrates who was controlling certain parts of Africa and it is very similar to the graph we saw in class in Ms. Xia's powerpoint but it is just focusing on Africa.


China in the late 1800s (edited)

Through this blog I am going to make a connection to an event we learned about earlier. What we learned before about China is that, like a sponge, it sucked up most of the world's silver by exporting many products. This was profitable in the short run, but eventually China lost tons money because countries stoped trading with them as much. China also made the mistake of creating cash crops. They ruined natural recourses like forests, to make room for cash crops like rice which they then exported and got silver in return. During the mid to late 19th century China lost most of its silver they had accumulated over the past hundreds of years through maritime trade. The reason for the reverse trading was the introduction of OPium. This drug created many problems in China and without a strong government, China was easy pray to Western countries and also Russia and Japan. "China was carved out like a melon." China tried to crack down on the drug problem, causing them to bump heads with the ultra powerful British Empire. England grew the poppied in India and then traded them with China. Lin Xexu, a strict Chinese official, destroyed 3 million pounds of Opium without compensation. Thus begun the first of a couple "opium wars." Each caused China to sucumb to unfair treaties with Britain allowing further dug trading.

Samurai Class

I read about the Tokugawa period, and how the period was governed by a shogun. The shogun was at the top of the social class. However, there were daimyo, lords, who had their own lands and what they said go. Japan was not exactly unified because each lord decided there currency, tax systems, and even had military forces. The book did not go into much detail about these military forces, which were the famous samurais. We know they were at the top in society, however it did not go into depth about their daily lives. I did some research about the samurais, and found an article The Samurai Class of the Tokugawa Period. During the Tokugawa period it was very peaceful, meaning there was no need for samurais bring them down financially. Samurais' would generally work for a daimyo and some would even work for the shogun. The samurais' who worked for the shoguns' lived a better life, financially, some were extremely rich. But there were some samurais' who just roamed called Ronin and they did not have a stable income. They found employment wherever and sometimes they would work for farmers or teach. There was a wide range of where a samurai was in a social structure, however their loyalty, and honor was admired. That is why during the Tokugawa period many of the samurais learned about poetry, art, and teaching. Tokugawa was a peaceful era which had not much need of samurais' and they promoted education among the samurais. As you can see, the peace also increased the amount of educated people along with Confucianism.
Lain. "The Samurai Class of the Tokugawa Period". Associated Content News. November 17,2009.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Industrial Revolution- Positive or Negative?

I feel as though the Industrial Revolution had its pros and cons. I will create a list here and by the end will see if one side outweighs the other.


1) The inventions that came out of the Industrial Revolution, such as steam and fuel run engines, the spinning jenny, the power loom, the cotton gin, and many more benefitted the people of that time era immensely.

2) The inventions benefitted multiple aspects of society. The engines provided a quicker and more efficient way of transportation and communication. All of the machinery that was invented allowed the amount of human labor to decrease and in turn led to a more efficient output of goods.

3) Due to the fact that the list of successful goods and services was ever growing, a “culture of innovation” (page 528 Ways of the World) was created. More was created, more was accepted, and ultimately more was improved.

4) The industrialization spread globally, changing and improving all areas, allowing trading opportunities as well as advancement in global relationships.

5) New forms of energy were discovered, such as oil, natural gas, and nuclear reactions, which led to the introduction of automobiles, airplanes, computers, and extreme advancement in electronics as a whole.


1) Due to the fact that factories and machinery required very little human labor, there was a huge increase in the loss of jobs of many.

2) The importance of agriculture, once the most dominant economic aspect in every civilization, shrank tremendously. Agriculture was once the greatest generator of national income and employed a large amount globally. With the importance of agriculture lost, what came with that was jobs lost as well.

3) New classes were established within the Industrial Revolution. There were the aristocrats, such as large landowners, who once ranked as top of the social pyramid. However as urban wealth became of more importance, the aristocrats were replaced by businessmen, manufacturers, and bankers. These new jobs were now of more importance than that of an aristocrat.

4) The new class system was not one built upon relationships. The aristocrats, middle classes, and laboring classes were completely separate. In Benjamin Disraeli’s novel Sybil, he describes the different classes as “two nations between whom there is no intercourse and no sympathy; who are ignorant of each other’s habits, thoughts, and feelings, as if they were dwellers in different zones or inhabitants of different planets.” (Page 538 Ways of the World)

5) What comes with factories is pollution, and what comes with pollution brings are problems. The quality of the factories in which laborers were working in were not of very good quality and led to both health and safety issues.

6) Although factories were created in order to lessen the amount of work both men and women had to do, it was still necessary for someone to be tending to the machines. This was a job that not many wanted for the work hours were demanding, the quality of the working quarters were unsatisfactory, and the pay was scarce. This led to unsatisfied workers, poverty, and rebellion.

As one can see, the list of ‘cons’ is a bit longer than the list of ‘pros.’ However, I feel as though the list of beneficial things that the Industrial Revolution brought is more significant than that of the cons. Yes, what came with the Industrial Revolution were some minor flaws, however in the long run, nothing but beneficial things have come from it. I feel as though as over all, the Industrial Revolution affected society positively and was extremely beneficial in forming what today’s world looks like.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Robespierre Trial

I believe that Robespierre was one of the most horrendous people to live, therefore he was guilty. In the trial, we prove him to be guilty. The main reason he was such a terrible person was because he killed hundred of thousands of innocent people. Why would he think he has the power to do such a awful crime. Many people tried to stop him but when they did they were sent to the reign of terror. A man like Robespierre deserved to die and suffer because after all the killings he should!
This mad disgusts me.

Napoleon Trial

I personally thought that Napoleon was guilty, he took part in many terrible actions and decisions, the main being not signing the proclamation of Rights of Man. Being the King of France his duties were to make sure the people were happy, but by not signing this proclamation he angered almost all of France. Once he realized that he upset pretty much all of france he escaped. As the King you should NOT leave and tell no one where your going. He did not just leave he tried to escape which is a big no no for the king. He also believed that slavery was a good thing. Which i strongly disagree with. He thought oh slaves are great, you can use them if you want. But really slaves should not have been legal when he was king its terrible way of treating humans and all humans should be treated fairly. There were more points in the trial which proved him to be as guilty as they come in my mind.

Feedback on Cy's Marx Smith handout

Cy, I strongly agree with your point about how the rich people used the poor people because there wages were so small that they could not provide for themselves or their families. The people had to suffer through the beginning of the Industrial Revelation. I know if i owned a factory or business i would at least try to up the wages so that my workers we able to survive. It would benefit my business because the customers would be more loyal. However i strongly disagree with you on your point about how the Industrial revolution was a horrible part in the american history because, it really did benefit everyone is one way or another. Even though the factory owners and wealthy people were benefited first eventually the poor people were benefited and their wages increased drastically. I believe that the Industrial Revolution was an excellent time and help with the inventions in a huge way because without these inventions todays world would not be the same.

Outcomes of the Industrial Revolution

The Industrial Revolution brought a lot of wealth to mainly Great Britain, and Germany, but it brought it to few people in the higher classes, and to the majority of the population it brought nothing. The section of people that did benefit from the industrial revolution were the Aristocrats, and the middle class people. These of course were only 30 percent of these nations people. The rest, 70 percent of the people, were laborers. They were the screwed ones. These people had really bad working conditions, and really low salaries. They had a lot of illnesses because there living conditions were not sanitary, so they were living a really tough life. Because of this, I feel as if the industrial revolution was really unsuccessful. 

I think that Smith sort of helped create this machine that Marx hated, so I don't think that he helped the people that much. He did help the overall economy, but the majority of the people were still miserable. I thought that Marx's ideas were really good. It is crazy how a person in those times could stop looking at the great and new technologies, and take the time to instead look at how the people were being treated. His huge idea about how everyone should be equal in politics must have been outrageous in those times, but it is one that is really good. 

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Extra Credit Post

Today’s game that we played gave me a much better understanding of what life would be like in Europe in the 1800s. Luckily I was a single woman going into the Industrial Revolution because providing for just one person is hard enough. In order to eat decent food, have suitable clothing and a roof over one’s head, one must work all day ever day. In order for all of these things to be made possible for more than one person, then it is necessary for everyone in the family to work as well, including the children. I saw some families where children died due to the horrific working conditions, which as tragic as it was, in some ways benefitted the families due to now there was one less mouth to feed. I felt that the factory managers should have been a bit more lenient and conscientious of the wages they were paying their workers. Yes, I realize that they had to make livings for themselves and their families at home as well, however when it is at the point where families are going hungry or living on the streets then I feel as though something must be changed.

When it came time for the second round to commence, I felt as though I had a better idea of how to be successful. Although eating less may be harmful to my body, eating only potatoes saved me an amble amount of money. Also, as awful as it may sound, it was quite beneficial to me that Layla passed away early on for I would not be able to provide for the two of us. She would have been too little to work in a factory and I would have been unable to bring her with me to work. All in all, I feel as though it would have been extremely difficult living in the times that we are studying, and it is highly doubtful that I would be capable of living a successful life back then. Playing this game allowed me to grasp a deeper understanding of what life for people of that era was like, allowing me to gain more interest in the topic as we continue to study it.

Welcome to Manchester

Hello, my name is Lola Johanson and I have just moved to Manchester. I am 20 years old and I have left my extremely wealthy family in France to come here and start a new life. I had one child, a baby girl, who sadly did not make it here alive. My husband disappeared immediately after Layla was born. I am here on my own, ready to make a living for myself. Word in France was that Britain is home of all of the latest and greatest inventions, and they have a textile industry with 52 million pounds of cotton. With railroads criss-crossing and factories steaming, Manchester is just the place I have been looking for.

Living in the countryside of France was dreadful. The estate where I usually stayed in was big enough to house the French army and a few more, and everywhere I looked there was some maid just waiting for me to ask them for something. I never saw any of my multiple mothers and my father was always off taking care of some business related need. My 16 siblings were always at parties or gambling or out spending our father’s money in the most absurd ways imaginable. I needed to get out of there before I turned into one of them, which I promised myself I would not let happen.

Richard, my first love and once husband, was always in full support of my plans I had for the future. We were going to have a family, get married, and start a school system in the local town near my estate. However, once I got pregnant with Layla, everything seemed to go downhill. Arguments were the only conversations we had, and I began seeing less and less of him. Then Layla was born, on October 7th, and Richard was gone. No one ever saw him again. After that tragedy I knew I had to get out of that town, away from everything that reminded me of him and our future plans we had together. I took what I could fit into a knapsack and headed south with Layla. However due to the fact that she was was born premature, she did not make it even a week. Having lost both my husband and a child, I continued on my voyage to Manchester. Upon my arrival, I can only hope to turn my life around.

Industrial Revolution

When reading about the Industrial Revolution, it was clear to see that it was a time of complete transformation. Change for the positive, that is, with new inventions being released constantly. The coal-fired steam engine, the spinning jenny, the power loom, and the cotton gin were just some of the many beneficial tools that added to the “culture of innovation.” (Page 528 Ways of the World)
However, the positive aspects of the Industrial Revolution were all that were stated in this section. It got me thinking if along with all of the beneficial effects this time had on society in the late 1700’s, if there was a downside as well. After some further research, I found that there were some negatives as well. According to Wikipedia along with various other websites such as Yahoo Answers, the main downsides of the Industrial Revolution were enclosure, pollution, child labor, and insanitary working quarters.
Enclosure took place where those of the wealthier class took money/land from those of a lower class, forming one larger and better lot, leaving the farmers jobless. The machines and factories caused pollution, which dirtied the once clean air. The factories needed more workers than just adults, and in turn hired children to work their machines. Due to the fact that they were hiring children, they were able to get away with paying them below minimum wage as well as having them work in extremely close and unsuitable environments.
As one can see, the Industrial Revolution brought both positives and negatives to society in the 1750s-1800s. The positives, however, strongly outweigh the negatives. All of the beneficial things the new inventions brought truly improved the way Europe matured as a whole, opening up countless doors to even more future opportunities. The negatives were in fact harmful in some ways, and it is understandable as to why some saw the Industrial Revolution as damaging to those who lived through it. Yet as a whole, I feel as though for the most part all that came with the Industrial Revolution was beneficial and “this continuous emergence of new techniques of production and the economic growth that they made possible mark the past 250 years as a distinct phase of human history.” (Page 528 Ways of the World)

Asian and Latin American Industries

After reading the section titled " Explaining the Industrial Revolution", I came across a brief statement that said, " the Industrial Revolution became global when a number of Asian and Latin American countries developed substantial industrial sectors." It then gave a long list of some of these sectors such as Oil, and natural gas, but I wanted to more about how they started for these to sections of the world. 

Asia(Asian tigers)

The Asian tigers is a term that refers to the highly developed regions of asia, which are Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan. The main reason why there was a huge increase in the asian Industries, was because of the motivated people, and the stable governments in asia. The governments was stable, and so many nations around the world sought asia as a place to invest in. Not only did foreign countries like the stable governments, but they also liked the good labor of the people. The workers in asia were both motivated and skilled, so they made asian countries such as South Korea  a great place to invest in. In 1960 was when the real industrialization happened for South Korea. This was when they switched from the less advanced manufacturing, to the more advanced manufacturing of steel. Shipbuilding and the automobile industries were now of interest, and for the next 30 years after 1960 South Korea grew to be considered a "Developed Country". The main automobile industry  is Hyundai-Kia which is the 4th largest automobile automaker.

Latin America(Argentina)

Argentina also has grown  a lot economically because of manufacturing. The only difference is that South Korea grew in the Automobile industry, while Argentina grew in the Agricultural industries. Argentina is now huge in the food processing industry, because of their own natural resources of crops such as soy and maize. 

Marx + Smith Handout

I think that the outcomes of the Industrial Revolution, at first, only helped improve the lives of the wealthy. The rich people took advantage of the poor, and left them to live on unlivable wages. The rich were the only people who could afford luxuries, and other inventions that came out of the revolution.

However, over time, inventions and other luxuries began to decrease in price. Workers gained more rights, as they formed unions and America moved towards social equality for all.
I agree with Marx that people were unequal during this era, however, I also agree with Smith that capitalism can be successful, as long as we keep those with capital in check.

The Industrial Revolution was a horrible part of America's history: it was full of oppression, discrimination, manipulation, and greed. However, it did give birth to economic success, revolutionary inventions, and global development in the long run.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Karl Marx

I thought the view of Karl Marx on the Industrial Revolution was refreshing. Instead of just viewing it as a time of technological advancement and urbanization, he saw it from the point of view of the workers. He felt that they were being treated unfairly and were being exploited. He recognized that there were two classes: the workers selling their labor, and the capitalists who were buying it. He saw that since workers were making the product that the factory workers were selling, the factory workers were paying the workers as little money as possible in order to make the largest profit. they were getting rich and sitting back, while the workers were spending long grueling days in the factory and being paid next to nothing for it. Marx said that the machine spread the working ability of the family, since it took away the value of strength. Workers just needed to be able to repeat the same motions all day, and the machines did the rest. this made it so that the man was paid less, and therefore the rest of the family was forced into working in order to earn enough money to support the family. even children were forced to work since strength and intelligence were not needed. He felt that the use of machines and lower wages to workers made the factory owners boatload of money, while the rest of society suffered. He believed it was time for the working class to revolt and rule society, Making everyone equal. It was socialism

Paul Frank and my wife Anne

My name is Paul and me and my wife, Anne, just moved into Manchester. We just moved from Japan because of the great rice fields in Manchester so we thought we could hit it big there. We definitely arent poor, but we arent rich either. We moved to Manchester because life in Japan was a little tougher than it is here. We lived in the mountains and fed off of the local indigenous creatures. We were also samurais. My wife Anne Frank is a skilled blade smith that specializes in assassination samurai swords.

Industrial Rev Activity

I personally thought that the activity was not well done and poorly organized. The main problem I had with the activity was that someone could go to the beach for one star of luxury for only a dollar but they could go the opera for 30 dollars and only get 3 luxury stars. This messed up the whole activity by the end because everyone ended up with like 20 luxury stars because they spent all their money on walks to the beach. Also another problem was that the citizens had no idea how much money their wages should be and so the owners could charge us for really low wages and they would profit a lot of money and we would have no money for use to spend. I guess that send us the right message about the corrupt owners but I still had a problem with the pricings so if this was changed then the activity would be beneficial and helpful.

Adam Smith

Adam Smith was a philosopher that wrote the wealth of the nations. He contained many beliefs that I'm going to investigate in this blog. One of the things that I want to talk about is the idea that people should be divided into 3 classes. These classes were those who have land, those who have money, and those who have labor. I don't think this was a proper way for society to be divided in two because of the fact that some people could be in all 3 of these classes. This would create tension and inequality between the citizens of this government. For example, a wealthy farmer that owned his own land and worked his own land.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The difference between communism, socialism, and capitalism

Although having socialist countries are widley assumed to be communist this is not always the case. Russia, despite having a long history of being communist, now has a president yet is still considered socialist. What socialist according to means is "system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole." HOwever is later associates socialism as the stage after a capitalist economy and before having communism. Communism and socialism are quite simmilar, they both believe in a sharing of recourses. Communism has the government be totalitarian and therefore can be no rebellion. Many in Enlgand during the time of the industrial revolution were pulling for a socialist economy so that there was not such a huge gap between the rich and the poor. In a communist country the government would take the factory and assign its people to work there. Treating them all as equal and having not one person be higher than another. The only way a communist country can work well is if the government is almost perfect. It cannot have people in it that are greedy otherwise then it will turn into the people of a country dying and having a very few government officials that are well off. The problem usually with communism (such as in north korea/dprk) is that the government is too corrupt and since it has all the power destorys itself. Socialism is not so specific in how the government will act. Although the government might still own the factory, there could be promotions as to who is charge among the factory owners. SOcialism is a more reasonable form of communism. Captialism is every man for himself. You have to work very hard in a capitalist society and if you are stuck at the bottom your whole life will be awful. That is what happened during the industrial revolution.

Industrial Revolution: Positive/Negative?

I think that the Industrial Revolution helped the higher more wealthy classes and people but it didn't help the poorer lower classes. I think that the higher classes noticed that the lower classes were poor and in need of money. When they realized this they hired more people from the families to work on the machines and then they paid each individual a smaller wage. That way the factory workers could produce maybe 3 times more than they were and then they would only have to pay a little more than before. Then the poorer people felt that they were making more because the prices in potatoes and other goods were lowered because of all the work that was being supplied. There were so many workers working to make money that many of the products doubled and tripled in production. Therefore the poorer people were able to afford a little more than they could before. This did help lower class a little because of the price drop but in relation to the wealthy people, the high class people were coming out way wealthier than the poor lower class. From the documents, the lower class was gaining some things like education, but it started slow so it wasn't real effective in the beginning compared to education now and where it can take you. But it was a step in the right direction. There were many points in these documents that mentioned the beatings and injuries inflicted on the laborers. This is obviously not very positive for the working class.

I think that Smith was right about how the "masters" or industrialists or factory owners were using the laborers because the laborers need to work to get money to survive, and the factory owners could have actually lived without workers, but the factory owners preferred workers so that they could produce more inventory and therefore make more money. I think that Marx was right about the point that the laborers should ideally make a time limit and set boundaries for when they work because otherwise they would be selling themselves and their freedom to the factory owners, and then essentially become slaves. The problem is that the laborers need the money to live and support their family and so they aren't always given the option of choosing how long they are to be employed. So I think that Marx had a good point and it makes sense but it wasn't exactly realistic for all of the laborers.

Extra Credit Game Reflection

The game was a very good was to experience what the lower classes were going through during the industrial revolution. At first i was barely scraping by. I had a family of three, and all of us had to work long, hard hours in order to earn the minimum wage paid by the factory owners. I could only afford the cheapest food, and a small room with no extra money for any form of luxury. I survived the first round without going into debt, and having 5.5 points left over. I was able to accumulate more money than my neighbors because i only had to feed 2 adults and one kid, who didn't eat as much. I was also able to work out a deal with a factory worked to pay me 6 points a round instead of four, and i forced my wife and kid to work, so i had three streams of income, so we all made enough money to feed ourselves. The second round was much better. the prices of everything were lowered a good amount, so i managed to save up 20 points by the end of the round which i was able to spend on luxuries, like meat, and walks on the beach. The game really demonstrated the unfair situation the factory owners were in. They were paying us bare minimum, and working us all day on grueling and tedious tasks. They were making thousands of times more than we all were. They all came off with more than 1000 points after round two, and we barely were making 20. I would have supported Marx because he was supported unions and fairer treatment of the working class. He also felt that workers deserved more power in society.

Game Reflection

From the beginning my family did not do very well. By drawing a 4 and starting off with less money that pretty much every one else, I was already struggling. In the first round, I made $5 more and my wife made $4. I had four kids that could have worked, too, but the boss of the textile factory refused to hire them for any pay whatsoever. I'm not sure why the industrialists were reluctant to hire more people because it seems like they would just make more money. So after the first round, where I didn't but anything except for potatoes and clothes for my family, I was $4 in debt. Even if the debt went away, I wouldn't have a place to live or the slightest thought of a luxury item. 

In the second round, the industrialists were slightly more willing to hire workers, and all of my family members got jobs. The pay slightly increased for my wife and I, and, surprisingly, our four kids received the same wages as my wife and I. So when the round was over I had the opportunity to buy a room and go to the beach a couple times. I was also able to ay off our debt from the previous round. Even though our family was started to be able to live a normal life, it was still annoying how much money the industrialists hoarded. While 6 people in my family brought home around $30 for their hard work, the industrialists were bringing home hundreds and hundreds of dollars for just sitting and watching everyone else do their work. It seems like the average person in society would live a much better and healthier life if their bosses just weren't so greedy.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Reflection of the Game

The game helped me realize how easy it was for the factory owners. I didn't have to go through the pressure of barely having any money and barely getting by. I made so much profit while my workers got almost nothing. After Round 2 I had made almost $1,300 in profit while my workers made $6 each. It really showed me how hard everyone else had to work. I remember Marjory having to kill one of her sons because she couldn't afford food for him. If that was what life was like then that is horrible. Luckily I was a very nice factory owner so at the end of the day I gave all my money/m&m's to my workers. Something the wealthy owners should have done to help out there workers. I generally had a lot of fun during the game. At times it was a little hectic having everyone fighting over jobs and going crazy over m&m's but it really showed us how little money people had to spend and you could even say helped set us up a little bit more for our trip for community service on Monday.