Last week, our history class explored the ways in which women were motivated to work in the Lowell Mills during the Industrial Revolution. This was a very dangerous job because of the many risks involved with working machines. These risks included getting body parts stuck in machines, limb amputation, and in one case, complete severance of the upper and lower body. Things that motivated women to work in these dreadful places included money, getting a start on the working life, and hopes for a better and wealthier future.
The Industrialization of society proved to be a very negative thing for many people, mainly farmers and entrepreneurs of that sort. The evolution to mass production of food put many farmers out of business, and forced them into poverty. In a desperate struggle for money, many parents were willing to put their children through awful conditions for money. This may sound greedy, but for the most part, children were willing to go through this in order to gain money.
While the societal norm in the eighteen-hundreds was that men were to do physical labor and were the only ones that belonged in the business world. However as the idea of women's rights became to develop, more and more women came to take part in business. Because of this, many young girls wanted a taste of the business world. They therefore joined up with the only business opportunity available to them: working in the mills. In doing this, the "mill girls", as they were called, hoped for a better and wealthier future, whether they were single or married.
Within the Industrial Revolution, the idea of gender equality started to arise in society because of women's motivation to get ahead in life. Because of their need of money, women were willing to work in terrible conditions for a limited amount of time for a reward of being ahead later in life.