Today’s class period is devoted to examining perspectives of working people living during the industrial revolution. We’re running a simulation written in the early 1900’s entitled “The Great Money Trick” by Robert Tressell for an understanding of the effects of concentrated CAPITAL on the industrial workforce. Students will organize their ideas using Commanding Capital During the Industrial Revolution!
As noted in a variety of primary sources during our recent inquiry into the industrial revolution, the development of business TRUSTS and MONOPOLIES concentrated capital to fuel efficient methods of industrial production. As Samuel Smiles, author of the 1875 “Thrift” article we read yesterday in class described, “There is an accumulation of wealth in (England) to which past times can offer no parallel…And yet notwithstanding all this wealth, there is an enormous mass of poverty.” How is it possible to generate so much new wealth yet still have such massive rates of poverty? This is precisely the question “The Great Money Trick” seeks to answer.
As this video references the German sociologist George Simmel. Note Robert Tressell had read, and was influenced by, his fellow European. They and the rest of planet earth inexorably tore into the 20th century; nobody could be neutral on this moving train, so some took to alter course.