LUDDITES 15

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Lesson Title: Were Luddites heroes
or Terrorists?
Dr. Robert Brown
• This lesson will build on your knowledge of
the Industrial Revolution (Early 1800s).
• You’ll be writing on a worksheet. If you run
out of space please use your own paper.
• Opinions or contributions will be appreciated,
so don’t be afraid to speak up.
• As the lesson progresses, add definitions and
extra words into the vocabulary bank, in the
top right hand of the sheet.
TASK 1: DO IT NOW: (4 minutes)
•
•
•
What can we see in these images? Describe each image
What questions do we have about these images? Write a question for each image
Challenge: How do these images link to our knowledge of previous lessons?
Lesson Title: Were Luddites heroes
or Terrorists? (3 MINS)
Learning Objectives:
• Describe who the Luddites
were and what they did
• Explain what conditions
drove the Luddites
• Evaluate the extent to
which Luddites were heroes
or terrorists
Challenge: Identify which we
think are the most important
reasons and consequences.
Vocabulary Builder:
(Fill this in throughout
the lesson)
• Industrial Revolution
• Cotton Industry
• Luddite
TASK 2: (12 mins) Summarise the
information from the grid into these
boxes. TIP: Circle any words you don’t
understand and add them to the vocabulary
builder.
Challenge: Circle and Explain
which you think was the most
important reason for Luddite
resistance?
Were the Luddites
Terrorists or just
desperate people?
WHAT DID
THEY DO?
WHO WERE
THEY?
Britain had a vast Empire and
industrial economy by 1815, but
the benefits of automation in the
cotton industry were not shared
equally.
Handloom weavers
burned mills and pieces
of factory machinery.
Factory owners could
dictate wages lowering them
and exploiting (taking
advantage of) workers.
There does not seem to have
been any political motivation
behind the Luddite riots and
there was no national
organization.
Parliament made
"machine breaking"
(i.e. industrial
sabotage) a capital
crime with the Frame
Breaking Act of 1812
Trading with other
countries was reduced due
to the war with France. The
Government needed taxes
from Factory owners to pay
for the war and other
essential services.
The government was elected
by wealthy men such as
landowners who were the only
ones who had the right to vote.
(All men would get the vote in
1918 and women in 1928).
Many wealthy politicians made
money from factories. Poor
people had no right to vote.
Three Luddites, led by George
Mellor, ambushed and
assassinated mill owner William
Horsfall of Ottiwells Mill in
Marsden, West Yorkshire at
Crosland Moor in Huddersfield.
The new factories used machines
that could be run by unskilled
workers. Factories could produce
far more cloth much quicker .
Home made cloth was expensive
due to the time it took to make.
less people needed to be
employed.
In 1817, an unemployed
Nottingham stockinger and
probably ex-Luddite, named
Jeremiah Brandreth led the
Pentrich Rising. While this
was a general uprising
unrelated to machinery, it
can be viewed as the last
major Luddite act.
In the 20th century the
word Luddite became
used to describe people
who hated technology
and were violent and
primitive.
The Luddite movement began in
Nottingham and culminated in a
region-wide rebellion that lasted
from 1811 to 1816. Main areas of
operation began in Nottinghamshire
in November 1811, followed by the
West Riding of Yorkshire in early
1812 then Lancashire by March 1813
The harsh economic conditions
of the Napoleonic Wars of 17931815 saw a rise of difficult
working conditions in the new
textile factories. Luddites
objected to the rising popularity
of automated textile equipment,
threatening the jobs and
livelihoods of skilled workers as
this technology allowed them to
be replaced by unskilled men,
women and child workers
Stockingers snd
weavers were skilled
workers who had
traditionally made and
sold clothes at home
until factories and
automated looms were
invented in the 1700s
Malcolm L. Thomis argued in
his 1970 history, The
Luddites, that without the
structure of a union, machinebreaking was one of very few
mechanisms workers could use
to increase pressure on
employers, to undermine lowerpaid competing workers and to
create solidarity among
workers
Although the origin of the name
Luddite (/ˈlʌd.aɪt/) is uncertain, the
movement was said to be named after
Ned Ludd, an apprentice who allegedly
smashed two stocking frames in 1779
and whose name had become
emblematic of machine destroyers.
Ned Ludd, however, was completely
fictional and used as a way to shock
and provoke the government.[5][6][7]
The name evolved into the imaginary
General Ludd or King Ludd, who, like
Robin Hood, was reputed to live in
Sherwood Forest.[8][a]
TASK 3: Each One Teach One: 12
minutes
1. Work in pairs with the person next to
you
2. One person must argue the Luddites
were heroes, the other must argue
they were terrorists
3. Using your notes and the extra
sources, write down an argument in
your writing frame (6 minutes)
4. Take it in turns to teach your partner
your argument while they write it down
(6 minutes)
TASK 3: Argument Writing Frame
1.
Point: I argue that the Luddites were heroes/terrorists because…
2.
Evidence: A piece of evidence that supports my argument is…..(Use
facts and opinions a source)
3.
Explain: From this I can deduce that…
Challenge: However it could also be argued that….
Terrorists
Sources
Archibald Prentice, wrote about the Luddite
disturbances in April 1812, in his book
Historical
Sketches
and
Personal
Recollections of Manchester (1851).
A large body of weavers and mechanics began to
assemble about midday, with the avowed
intention of destroying the power-looms,
together with the whole of the premises, at
Westhoughton.
The military rode at full speed to
Westhoughton; and on their arrival were
surprised to find that the premises were
entirely destroyed, while not an individual could
be seen to whom attached any suspicion of
having acted a part in this truly dreadful
outrage.
In 1812 a letter signed by General Ned
Ludd was sent to a factory owner in
Huddersfield.
Information has just been given in, that you
are an owner of those detestable Shearing
Frames... I am now writing to you... that if
they are not removed by the end of next
week, I shall send 300 men to destroy them.
Heroes
Lord Byron, speech in the House of Lords (27th
February, 1812)
But whilst these outrages must be admitted to exist
to an alarming extent, it cannot be denied that they
have arisen from circumstances of the most
unparalleled distress: the perseverance of these
miserable men in their proceedings, tends to prove
that nothing but absolute want could have driven a
large, and once honest and industrious, body of the
people, into the commission of excesses so
hazardous to themselves, their families, and the
community.
Lord Byron, speech in the House of Lords (27th
February, 1812): "I have been in some of the most
oppressed provinces of Turkey; but never, under the
most despotic of infidel governments, did I behold
such squalid wretchedness as I have seen since my
return, in the very heart of a Christian country.
Had proper meetings been held in the earlier stages
of these riots, had the grievances of these men and
their masters (for they also had their grievances)
been fairly weighed and justly examined, I do think
that means might have been devised to restore
these workmen to their avocations, and tranquility
to the country.
TASK 4: Plenary: Luddism was ‘mindless
violence’
Do you agree? Plot your opinion on the grid
Organised
Opposes the
statement
Supports the
statement
Disorganised
Plenary: Vocabulary Builder
• Make sure your vocabulary
builder is filled in.
• Fill in any gaps you have as
we feed back.
Plenary 2
• What is the most important thing we
have learned in todays lesson? Write
one thing.
• Challenge: What can Luddites teach
us about 21st century problems with
jobs and automation?
Vocabulary Builder:
•
Industrial Revolution
•
Automation
•
Luddite
•
Handloom
•
Stockinger
•
Machine Breaking
•
Solidarity
•
Capital crime
SOURCES
Terrorists
Archibald Prentice, wrote about the Luddite
disturbances in April 1812, in his book
Historical Sketches and Personal Recollections
of Manchester (1851).
A large body of weavers and mechanics
began to assemble about midday, with the
avowed intention of destroying the powerlooms, together with the whole of the
premises, at Westhoughton. The military
rode at full speed to Westhoughton; and
on their arrival were surprised to find
that
the
premises
were
entirely
destroyed, while not an individual could be
seen to whom attached any suspicion of
having acted a part in this truly dreadful
outrage.
In 1812 a letter signed by General Ned
Ludd was sent to a factory owner in
Huddersfield.
Information has just been given in, that
you are an owner of those detestable
Shearing Frames... I am now writing to
you... that if they are not removed by the
end of next week, I shall send 300 men to
destroy them.
Heroes
Lord Byron, speech in the House of Lords (27th
February, 1812)
But whilst these outrages must be admitted to
exist to an alarming extent, it cannot be denied
that they have arisen from circumstances of the
most unparalleled distress: the perseverance of
these miserable men in their proceedings, tends to
prove that nothing but absolute want could have
driven a large, and once honest and industrious,
body of the people, into the commission of
excesses so hazardous to themselves, their
families, and the community.
Lord Byron, speech in the House of Lords (27th
February, 1812): "I have been in some of the
most oppressed provinces of Turkey; but never,
under the most despotic of infidel governments,
did I behold such squalid wretchedness as I have
seen since my return, in the very heart of a
Christian country. Had proper meetings been held
in the earlier stages of these riots, had the
grievances of these men and their masters (for
they also had their grievances) been fairly weighed
and justly examined, I do think that means might
have been devised to restore these workmen to
their avocations, and tranquility to the country.
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