HIS 1300, Dr. Ash, Second Paper Questions (4-5 pages)
Due Thursday, April 21, in lecture.
Answer only one of the following:
1. Compare the ideas of Adam Smith (“The fruits of the division of labor”) with those of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (“All that is solid melts into air” and “Nothing to lose but their chains”). Each side draws very different conclusions regarding the consequences of capitalism and industrialization. Based on their writings, what would you argue are the major benefits and problems with the capitalist and communist economic systems? Which system is ultimately better for the entire population living under it, and why? In your answer, be sure to consider both sides, and use specific examples and quotations to support your answer. (You may also wish to consider Engels’s “How English industrial workers lived,” Flora Tristan’s “The London laboring classes,” and/or Multatuli’s “Corruption in the Dutch colonies” for examples.)
2. Based on your reading for this course, were members of the European working classes any better off than the native peoples around the globe living under European imperial rule during the nineteenth century? Compare and contrast the lives and struggles of the English working poor (Friedrich Engels’s “How English Industrial Workers Lived,” and Flora Tristan’s “The London Laboring Classes”) with those living in the Dutch and English colonies (Multatuli’s “Corruption in the Dutch Colonies,” and George Orwell’s “Shooting an Elephant”). Considering all aspects of daily life (civil rights, economic security, working conditions, etc.), were European laborers really just colonists in their own country? Be sure to consider both sides of the question, and use specific examples and quotations to support your answer.
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