- Industrial society
sociology, "industrial society" refers to a society with a modern societal structure. Such a structure developed in the west in the period of time following the industrial revolution. Pre-modern, or Pre-industrial societyare also called agrarian societies. Industrial societies are generally mass societies.
Industrial society is characterized by the use of external energy sources, such as
fossil fuels, to increase the rate and scale of production. [cite web |url=http://media.wiley.com/product_data/excerpt/98/04717398/0471739898.pdf |title=Chapter 1 |accessdate=2007-12-18 |format=pdf ] The production of food is shifted to large commercial farms where the products of industry, such as combine harvestersand petroliumbased fertilizers, are used to decrease required human labor while increasing production. No longer needed for the production of food, excess labor is moved into these factorieswhere mechanizationis utilized to further increase efficiency. As populations grow, and mechanizationis further refined, often to the level of automation, many workers shift to expanding service industries.
Industrial society makes
urbanizationdesirable, in part so that workers can be closer to centers of production, and the service industrycan provide labor to workers and those that benefit financially from them, in exchange for a piece of production profits with which they can buy goods. This leads to the rise of very large cities and surrounding suburbanareas with a high rate of economic activity.
These urban centers require the input of external energy sources in order to overcome the
diminishing returns[Arthur, Brian: "Positive Feedbacks in the Economy", "Scientific American", 262(92-99): Feb. 1990.] of agricultural consolidation, due partially to the lack of nearby arable land, associated transportation and storage costs, and are otherwise unsustainable. [cite journal |last=McGranahan |first=Gordon |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=2003 |month=November |title=URBAN CENTERS: An Assessment of Sustainability |journal=Annual Review of Environment and Resources |volume=28 |issue= |pages=243–274 |id= |url= |accessdate= |quote= |doi=10.1146/annurev.energy.28.050302.105541 ] This makes the reliable availability of the needed energy resources high priority in industrial government policies.
Some theoreticians -- namely
Ulrich Beck, Anthony Giddensand Manuel Castells-- argue that we are located in the middle of a transformation or transitionfrom industrial societies to post-modern societies. The triggering technology for the change from an agricultural to an industrial organisation was steam power, allowing mass productionand reducing the agricultural work necessary. Thus many industrial cities are built around rivers. Identified as catalyst or trigger for the transition to post-modern or informational societyis global information technology.
*Grinin, L. 2007. Periodization of History: A theoretic-mathematical analysis. In: [http://urss.ru/cgi-bin/db.pl?cp=&page=Book&id=53184&lang=en&blang=en&list=1 "History & Mathematics"] . Moscow: KomKniga/URSS. P.10-38. ISBN 9785484010011.
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