Hi, welcome back. Make yourself comfortable. This week we're going to talk about what I and other historians called, the great acceleration. You think about industrial revolution and progress. Don't think about this is just kind of a linear continuum just going straight that way. Think about it instead as a situation where you've got all these advances, and then because of these advances people see that we can make a lot of different kinds of advances and then they really leap forward. Actually the pace quickens. You can argue the period between 1890 and 1914 is the most dynamic period economically, socially, politically, perhaps in the whole history of the world for a period of, say, 25 years, up to that point. It's marked, first of all, by what I and other scholars called, the second industrial revolution. A second industrial revolution that really takes off in the 1880s and is really going by 1890. Think that image of the rocket ship. It's moving slowly until it kind of clearing the force of gravity, and then a booster kicks in and, man, it's really moving. It's going twenty five thousand miles per hour by the time it's clearing the Earth's atmosphere. That's a little bit of what's happening. Now in this period we're going to be looking at between 1890 and 1914. And forces are going to be set in motion at the limits of people's capacity to control them, at the limits of people's capacity even to understand them. And if you understand that, you actually understand a lot about why there is a gigantic crackup which we call the First World War. But let's start with the second industrial revolution. The second industrial revolution really sees the development of a bunch of new technologies and new products. Think of the first industrial revolution as kind of symbolized by the steam engine. Making things like cotton textiles, steam engine, cotton garments - it's a good way to understand - steamships, the railroad, second industrial revolution. Think about emblem's like chemistry and all kinds of chemical products. Electricity, the widespread use of electric power, electric lights. Think about things like the internal combustion engine, automobiles, the use of petroleum as fuel, and you begin to get a sense of how things really change and take off. But what's happening here, if we think about this as a historian, is a cycle of cause and effect that's quickening. In the first week, I talked about the cycle of situation, problem, solution, new situation. Think about that as a cycle. Now, in the traditional world, you have a situation that remains in place for a long time. Problem slowly arise, incremental solutions come up, limited by the natural capabilities of people, the forces of wind, water and so on. Animal power. They come up with solutions, they advance and work forward and sometimes they go backward. Now, in this industrial era, think about you have a situation, you solve a problem coming out of that situation. How do we do things with cotton that use the steam engines we were using to pump water out of coal mines? Oh, well, with this we can make a machine. Oh, with this machine we can do something else. You have a situation, a problem, a new solution. That cycle now was going a lot faster. The quickening of the cycle is a lot of what defines the modern world. Instead of this being a cycle that might unfold over a generation, two generations, five generations, these are cycles that are unfolding in a year, five years, 10 years. If you think about that as a cycle, almost as a sort of engine, you can ask yourself, what's fueling the engine? What's enabling all of this to happen? One thing that's important is that once you build machines powered by fossil fuels, you begin to realize that the machines can make other machines. So I've developed this machine that can work iron. And huh, with this machine that can work iron. I can actually build a machine that can make another machine. So for example, I want to stamp that iron into the shape of a particular part. Well, I need to build the stamp that will hammer that iron into that part with machine power. If I have a machine that builds the stamp that enables me to make another machine. Just give you a really simple example of that. Take a look at this bicycle cirque in 1900. Think about the parts involved here. It seems like a very simple machine but actually it's fairly complex. You need a machine, first of all, that allows you to build the machines that can stamp out parts like a spoke, which is a distinctive kind of part or crossbars, another distinctive kind of part. Then you need a machine that also can bend the metal for the wheel rims. Also notice the commodities that you need to import to make this bicycle effective. Look at the tire, you need to get rubber for these tires from somewhere, the leather that needs to go on the seat and then you need to create a bicycle chain. And what you've done now, actually, the bicycle itself of course, is another kind of machine. Human power. Another enabler that allows you to get this take off is because of the first wave of developments of chemical experiments. People realize how powerful chemistry can be because of the stuff that happened in the early 1800s. So a lot of private firms and governments support work by people who are doing chemistry. And then chemistry and people doing chemistry make all kinds of other discoveries of what happens when you break down certain elements, combine certain elements. They build laboratories to do this kind of work indeed. Chemistry will begin to branch off into a distinctive science called physics that's actually developing theoretical principles about the physical properties. Especially the physical properties of electromagnetic forces or other kinds of more invisible forces. In this age of chemistry as you combine products. You begin to realize all sorts of possibilities. Let's just give you a few different sorts of examples. Take something as commonplace as medicines. Quinine that can help you cure malaria which allows you to explore Africa and colonize it. Or something as common place as say, aspirin. If you explore the history of a lot of the ordinary products that you use every day, aspirin, breakfast cereal. You'll find over and over again that the histories of those products look to this period of 1880s, but especially 1890s, first decade of the 1900s. Aspirin, chemists work up some different compounds and begin to realize there's some pharmaceutical properties here. Then you manufacture this as a consumer product which they call aspirin. This is actually developed by German chemists and German company. In fact, the most dynamic area for breakthroughs in chemistry in the whole world was happening in the late 1800s in Germany. In part coming out of German universities, which were seen as the best universities in the world back then. Let me give you another kind of entirely commonplace example. Here's an ad for a product probably all you heard of, Coca-Cola. This ad is about from 1900, at this point Coca-Cola is just breaking nationwide as a consumer product. They're hiring actresses to pose for portraits. Ok. Ok, what's going on with Coca-Cola. Now, the myth and legend of the Coca-Cola Company is there is this Atlanta chemist in his drugstore and he's combining some different things and comes up with this beverage and, um, that tastes good. And he starts selling it to his customers and the next thing you know there's Coca-Cola being sold all over the United States. It's a great story. Lot of truth in it. Ask yourself, how can this happen? And it's so commonplace you might ignore it but the absolutely critical thing to have so that you can sell Coca-Cola at a drugstore or soda fountain, as they might call it, in a thousand different places, is all those thousand different places have to be able to do something called, 'soda water'. They have to have carbonated water. Well, carbonated water does not flow naturally in rivers, you have to make carbonated water. What is carbonated water? Well, it's pressurized injection of carbon dioxide into water. Again, just think about it, it's a simple chemical compound, but it requires some technology to produce soda water. You have to create containers of pressurized carbon dioxide, you have to isolate that e ement, put it in a container, pressurize it. You have to be able to disseminate the ability to inject pressurized carbon dioxide into water to a lot of different places. It turns out another critical component to have carbonated water is refrigeration. Carbonated water tends to do much well and hold its fizz a lot longer when it's refrigerated. Then you think, um, where does refrigeration come from? When did we learn to figure that out? Same period. So Coca-Cola itself is enabled by the age of chemistry. Or to give you another illustration of how important chemistry becomes in a very different fiel there is the invention of chemical explosives. You have an age of explosives that are basically made out of gunpowder. You can use advanced chemistry to create explosives vastly more powerful than mere gunpowder. One of those is dynamite. Later more sophisticated versions of that will have names like TNT to the point that a pound of TNT, that I could hold in my hands, could blow up the entire building that I'm sitting in right now. A pound of gunpowder could not have done that. The inventor of dynamite is this man Alfred Nobel. Nobel had, shall we say, mixed feelings about dynamite being the principal product to which he could lend his name. So he was also anxious to use the profits from his dynamite which was a very valuable construction tool by the way, making all kinds of engineering projects possible and mining but had many other uses. Nobel decided to create a more benign endowment from his work called 'The Nobel Prizes'. Or let's take this example which, again, you might not have thought of as chemistry but it starts in chemistry. This is a man using an early thing called an x-ray. Hope you've heard of X-rays and take them for granted but just think, when did people figure out how to actually look through the skin? Can you imagine what a super power that felt like the first time someone was actually able to look through the skin and see the bones underneath? Here's actually someone having his arm examined through an early X-ray with radiation being generated by that tube that you see at the bottom. The person who first discovered this process is this man, a German named Wilhelm Roentgen. Interesting. Ask yourself, how does Roentgen happened to do this? Roentgen is working as a chemist, and later you could even say a physicist, at a German university, happens to be the University of Wurzbürg. The existence of these universities is a very important thing. These universities are now systematically cultivating scientific knowledge from people like Roentgen who is simply exploring now a lot of different things and happens to discover X-rays. Roentgen himself doesn't go into the private sector try to make a lot of money out of this. Indeed, he doesn't really develop it in a form that can be industrially produced. That job is done more than anyone else maybe by this man, an American, William Coolidge. Coolidge's story is also pretty exemplary. Coolidge gets his scientific training now at another one of these universities. One inspired a little bit by those German models. He gets some training at this new Massachusetts Institute of Technology that's been set up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Coolidge is working for the private sector. Coolidge is working for a new company that's been formed by the inventor Thomas Edison called General Electric. He developes an X-ray tube to generate these rays that is really the forerunner of the tubes you can find in most X-rays used in the world today. Another illustration of the enablers for these new technologies is electric power. We talked about electricity that goes from being a pure novelty item to something really important in the first half of the 1800s. That's the Telegraph. But all the Telegraph is, 'oh, we found electric current and we can turn it on and off'. Bzz, stop, bzz, stop. Oh, well, the stops and starts, I can communicate with that through wires. That's the Telegraph. This is a different idea. This is I can use electricity actually to generate power. I can generate electricity on such a large scale that I can power electric lights, I can power machines that are using electricity through dynamos like these. This is from an exhibition in 1893. Thousands of horse power can now be silently generated by these whirring dynamos. Another example of one of the enablers of the second industrial revolution is the development of an internal combustion engine. So instead of just shoveling coal into a burning furnace, kind of like your fireplace, that kicks off steam and then finding ways to cycle that steam to power an engine. This is actually inclosing that combustion process with the constant firing of little explosions pushing pistons, creating vacuums and empowering an engine in a much smaller space that eventually will use liquid fuels. Benzene, kerosene, petroleum products. In other words, the age of oil fueled internal combustion engines that open up huge new possibilities for what you can do. Automobiles, airplanes. Here's an example of the first truly mass produced automobile. This is the Ford Model T which begins to get produced at scale around 1909-1910. This was the automobile that could be available to the masses. Ordinary people could buy it. It seems to us today like actually a very simple thing but if you study it carefully, it's actually a highly complex piece of machinery. There are all sorts of things going on here headlamps, rubber tires. You can just see all the different parts that have to be put together, the seats, there's a transmission in which the engine can generate revolutions that are then transmitted to the wheels, and so on. But of course, once you've developed something like an automobile, you have a new situation, shall we say, all kinds of new problems and opportunities. The cycle begins again, as all of you can imagine. Countries are physically transformed, and as they're transformed all kinds of new economic activity occurs. The first thing to notice about the second industrial revolution is that the first industrial revolution has created enablers that create a whole different family of products that in turn have vast effects themselves. Aspirin and other pharmaceuticals. Now people can live a lot longer. Medicines are much more generally available than they ever were before. Automobiles are transforming the whole world of transportation and what's possible. Electric power allows you to light rooms in situations where that wasn't possible before, and on and on. As all of this is happening, there are new players that are coming on the scene. Britain might have been the great example of the first industrial revolution. The great examples in the second industrial revolution now are countries like the United States of America, Germany, Japan catching up fast. All these countries are able to actually benefit in a way from being second adopters. Since they're building up from scratch, they don't have to retool their old factories, they can take advantage of some of these innovative ideas and processes from the ground up. Also, a lot of new players all over the world. I call role players in the tropics here because the second industrial revolution is creating an enormous demand for different kinds of commodities, and places all over the world that can supply these commodities are also becoming much more important. Places that can produce things like rubber, tin, oil. And new institutions are growing with it. Imagine, what would be one of the most important new institutions that would begin to arise? You might think about this for a while, you might say things like factories or roads. But my answer for you is just going to be a really simple one. Cities. Take the United States of America for instance. In the United States in the year 1900. This is still a very rural country. The majority of the people living in the United States in 1900 still live in communities of two thousand people or less, the majority of Americans. In 20-30 years that's just going to change dramatically. Huge cities are already beginning to rise. In 1850-1860, Chicago is a one horse town. In 1890, Chicago is a colossal city already and it's growing as fast as it possibly can. By 1910, Chicago is growing so fast that it will be the sixth largest German speaking city in the entire world, just from the German immigrant population in Chicago. So now, just stop for a moment. I said in the first week of presentations that in the traditional world you didn't have a lot of cities. Ten to 15 percent of the population lived in communities of more than 2000 people. For time immemorial. Now for the first time in all of human history 40 percent, 50 percent, in Britain 60-70 percent of the people are living in cities. This has never happened before. This is a fundamental shift in the way humans live. So then, yes. Well, if cities are growing up, cities of millions of people, not just one or two but eight, 10, 12 of them. Think about the institutions you need to build. You need things like, how do you get clean water to all these people? You need roads, transportation facilities for people to get around. Things like a police force. Just think about the public services you take for granted in your city and ask yourself when did people start developing those things. It's around this period of time. Just to give you example of how important this was. Cities were very unhealthy places to live in the 1970s and 1980s. You were much more likely to live out a healthy life if you lived on a farm than if you lived in a city. If you went to a place like Chicago, Chicago was being swept by periodic cholera epidemics that would kill thousands of people at a time. That's because Chicago didn't have ample supplies of clean water. They had to build a sewage system. Think about what's involved in building a sewage system for the first time. These are huge projects. So what's happening then is you're creating public institutions of government. Actually, the most important of these in this period are public institutions for municipal government, for city government. Picked one illustration that of how people get around cities. This is an illustration from London. You're building public transportation institutions that are running fleets of trolley cars on rails that have been dug in your newly created roads. Or here's another example, this one from New York City. And again, just imagining the construction work involved in creating that kind of infrastructure. And think about the institution you need behind it in order to do all that kind of work. In the background of that photograph was this great creation, The Brooklyn Bridge, allowing one part of New York City to communicate more easily with another part of New York City. It's a tremendous feat of civil engineering. And indeed, if you look at all of these projects, what they all have in common is that phrase 'civil engineering'. The application of science to the solution of practical problems on this very large scale. Municipal government and the civil engineer is also a symbol of the second industrial revolution. Another symbol is the rise of much larger private institutions that have the capabilities to assemble and produce these increasingly complex machines and products. Corporations. Corporations like this one. This is a picture of the facilities of the Standard Oil Company at the end of the 1880s. The Standard Oil Company is created in Ohio. We don't think of Ohio as a big oil state, but Standard Oil was using oil a lot of it from nearby Pennsylvania. Here they are near the Ohio River, and this is the initial facility they're building for creating petroleum products at the end of the 1880s. Standard Oil will get a lot bigger than this and encompass many more enterprises in the years to come. So if you step back, what are we saying here? We're saying that the second industrial revolution is that stage where you reached an initial plateau and then because of this new situation and all sorts of enablers, you're able to create a lot of the products, organizations, institutions and ways of life that really mold a lot of the way we live today. In the next presentation, I'm going to talk, perhaps, about the most important enabler of all in these changes. The rise of modern capitalism. See you then.