Why did the industrial revolution first occur in England? Discuss the quality of life of the people there during the industrialization. How does it compare with that in India at present?

Sample Answer


The Industrial Revolution, marking a pivotal shift from agrarian economies to industrialized societies, originated in England during the late 18th century. Its emergence in England is attributed to a confluence of geographical, technological, and socio-political factors.


Reasons for the Industrial Revolution in England:

  • Geographical Advantages:
    • Rich Natural Resources: Coal and iron ore deposits powered machinery and railroads.
    • Colonial Reach: The British Empire ensured a steady supply of raw materials and a market for finished products.
  • Technological Prowess:
    • Key Inventions: The spinning jenny, steam engine, and power loom were instrumental.
    • Infrastructure: The development of canals and railways boosted internal trade.
  • Socio-Political Climate:
    • Political Stability: A stable government fostered industrial growth.
    • Financial Systems: The advent of banking and stock markets facilitated industrial investments.
    • Agricultural Revolution: Improved farming techniques led to surplus labor for industrial tasks.

Quality of Life During Industrialization:

  • Urban Challenges:
    • Overcrowding: Cities swelled, leading to cramped living spaces.
    • Health Issues: Pollution and inadequate sanitation cause diseases.
  • Workplace Exploitation:
    • Child Labor: Children worked in perilous factory conditions.
    • Exhaustive Workdays: Workers endured long hours for meager pay.

Comparison with Present-Day India:

  • Economic Discrepancies: India witnesses stark contrasts between urban wealth and rural impoverishment, mirroring early industrial England.
  • Labor Concerns: Issues like child labor persist in India, echoing England’s past.
  • Health and Infrastructure: Despite advancements, India confronts health and sanitation challenges. The IT revolution in India, akin to England’s industrial surge, has reshaped its economic landscape.


Due to its particular context, England’s Industrial Revolution brought both economic benefits and societal challenges. Modern India, in its developmental journey, exhibits parallels with industrial England, emphasizing the intricate dance between economic progress and societal welfare. Continuous efforts are needed to ensure a balanced growth trajectory.

Free UPSC MasterClass
This is default text for notification bar