economic sector characterized by large scale automated manufacturing as in industrialization
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Industry is the production of a good or service within an economy. Manufacturing industry became a key sector of production and labour in European and North American countries during the Industrial Revolution, upsetting previous mercantile and feudal economies

The purpose of industry is obvious. It is to supply man with things which are necessary, useful or beautiful, and thus to bring life to body or spirit. ~ R. H. Tawney
CONTENT : A - F , G - L , M - R , S - Z , See also , External links


Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author

A - F

  • The importance of the culture industry in the spiritual constitution of the masses is no dispensation for reflection on its objective legitimation, its essential being, least of all by a science which thinks itself pragmatic.
  • Decidedly the best application of art to industry is when a great many copies are made from an exceedingly good pattern.
    • William Burges Art applied to industry: a series of lectures, 1865. p. 1.
  • A system must be managed. It will not manage itself. Left to themselves in the Western world, components become selfish, competitive, independent profit centres, and thus destroy the system... The secret is cooperation between components toward the aim of the organization. We can not afford the destructive effect of competition.
  • In the 1950s, industrial workers had become the largest single group in every developed country, and unionized industrial workers in mass-production industry (which was then dominant everywhere) had attained upper-middle-class income levels. They had extensive job security, pensions, long paid vacations, and comprehensive unemployment insurance or "lifetime employment." Above all, they had achieved political power... Thirty-five years later, in 1990, industrial workers and their unions were in retreat. They had become marginal in numbers. Whereas industrial workers who make or move things had accounted for two fifths of the American work force in the 1950s, they accounted for less than one fifth in the early 1990s--that is, for no more than they had accounted for in 1900, when their meteoric rise began... By the year 2000 or 2010, in every developed free-market country, industrial workers will account for no more than an eighth of the work force. Union power has been declining just as fast.
    • Peter Drucker, "The Age of Social Transformation." The Atlantic Monthly; Nov. 1994; Vol. 274, No. 5. p. 53-80.
  • Big industry has brought all the people of the Earth into contact with each other, has merged all local markets into one world market, has spread civilization and progress everywhere and has thus ensured that whatever happens in civilized countries will have repercussions in all other countries. It follows that if the workers in England or France now liberate themselves, this must set off revolution in all other countries – revolutions which, sooner or later, must accomplish the liberation of their respective working class.
  • Big industry, and the limitless expansion of production which it makes possible, bring within the range of feasibility a social order in which so much is produced that every member of society will be in a position to exercise and develop all his powers and faculties in complete freedom. It thus appears that the very qualities of big industry which, in our present-day society, produce misery and crises are those which, in a different form of society, will abolish this misery and these catastrophic depressions.
  • Since the management of industry by individuals necessarily implies private property, and since competition is in reality merely the manner and form in which the control of industry by private property owners expresses itself, it follows that private property cannot be separated from competition and the individual management of industry. Private property must, therefore, be abolished and in its place must come the common utilization of all instruments of production and the distribution of all products according to common agreement – in a word, what is called the communal ownership of goods.
  • Big industry, freed from the pressure of private property, will undergo such an expansion that what we now see will seem as petty in comparison as manufacture seems when put beside the big industry of our own day. This development of industry will make available to society a sufficient mass of products to satisfy the needs of everyone.
  • Industry, which needs young men who are healthy, tractable, unpretentious and, I would even say, full of illusions, often receives engineers who are tired out, weak in body, and less ready than one could wish to take modest jobs and work so hard that everything seems easy to them. I am convinced that they could begin practical work much earlier and just as well prepared, by leaving things which are not used in practice out of their school education.

G - L

  • God forbid that India should ever take to industrialism after the manner of the West. ... If an entire nation of 300 million took to similar economic exploitation, it would strip the world bare like locusts.
    • Mahatma Gandhi, as reported in Development Without Destruction: Economics of the Spinning Wheel, p. 97
  • Advancement of the human factor in industry... varies so much that unless we use measurement and abide by the results, there is no possibility of repeating the process accurately and efficiently at will, or of predicting and controlling the future conditions that assure that advancement.
  • Industry is the vis motrix of husbandry, and therefore an ancient English writer observes, "that a single uncultivated acre is a real physical evil in any state."
  • There are no honest goods to buy or to sell; adulterated foods, shoddy manufacture of all that we wear, the underpaid labor and consumed life that make every garment a texture of falsehood, the hideous competitive war that slays its millions where swords and cannons slay their tens, all unite to baffle and mock the efforts of the awakened conscience at every turn, and make the industrial system seem like the triumph of hell and madness on the earth. Only by a sort of terrible daily denial of his spiritual self, a crucifixion of the principles by which he longs to organize his life, can a man wrest a stained and insecure livelihood from this terrible war for bread which we call industry.
  • I don't think industrial civilization is worth the distortion of human nature and the meanness and the loss of contact with the earth that it entails.
  • A Renaissance busied with psychology might perhaps have considered man’s faculty of action as worthy of investigation; a mediæval period, the strength of his faith, a classical period—in part at least—his capacity for happiness. Such traits have lost their value for the modern psychologist; they are not even regarded at all, and industry has remained as the only virtue—with its satellites, ambition and success—a conception of virtue which the Ancients would never have hesitated to relegate to the lowest of men, to pariahs and to slaves.
    • Ludwig Klages, The Science of Character, W. Johnston, trans., p. 15

M - R

  • Do we realize that industry, which has been our good servant, might make a poor master?
    • Aldo Leopold "A Plea for Wilderness Hunting Grounds" [1925]; Published in Aldo Leopold's Southwest, David E. Brown and Neil B. Carmony (eds.) 1990 , p. 160.
  • There are many branches of manufacturing industry which greatly depend for their success upon the designer's art, and it is necessary that the industrial designer should possess a knowledge of the processes of the manufacture in which his designs will be utilized, as well as of the properties and capabilities of the material to which they will be applied.
  • Life without industry is guilt, and industry without art is brutality.

S - Z

  • Broadly speaking, the object of industry is to set up economic ways and means of satisfying human wants and in so doing to reduce everything possible to routines requiring a minimum amount of human effort.
  • All the time the principles upon which industry should be based are simple, however difficult it may be to apply them; and if they are overlooked it is not because they are difficult, but because they are elementary. They are simple because industry is simple.
  • The purpose of industry is obvious. It is to supply man with things which are necessary, useful or beautiful, and thus to bring life to body or spirit. In so far as it is governed by this end, it is among the most important of human activities. In so far as it is diverted from it, it may be harmless, amusing, or even exhilarating to those who carry it on, but it possesses no more social significance than the orderly business of ants and bees, the strutting of peacocks, or the struggles of carnivorous animals over carrion.
  • The great Inventor is one who has walked forth upon the industrial world, not from universities, but from hovels; not as clad in silks and decked with honors, but as clad in fustian and grimed with soot and oil.
  • The major vehicle of for the transition to the capitalist mode of production was the textile industry of eighteenth - century England. In cloth production mercantile wealth was visibly transformed into capital, as it acquired the dual function of purchasing machines and raw materials, on the one hand, and buying human energy to power their operation on the other.

See also

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