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Encyclopedia > Manual labour

Manual labour (or manual labor) is physical work done with the hands, especially in an unskilled job such as fruit and vegetable picking, road building, or any other field where the work may be considered physically arduous, and which has as a profitable objective, usually the production of goods. Employment is a contract between two parties, one being the employer and the other being the employee. ... A good in economics is any physical object (natural or man-made) or service that, upon consumption, increases utility, and therefore can be sold at a price in a market. ...

"Work" by Ford Madox Brown
"Work" by Ford Madox Brown

In ancient times the status of manual labourers was low, as most physical tasks were done by slaves. This continued into the feudal period. This modest position is still reflected in such professional designations as ranch hand or stage hand, where 'hand' (a pars pro toto for pair of hands, or rather for their owner) means an employee working in the named context. However, certain skilled labourers were seen as artisans, well-paid and could aspire to become influential citizens, especially via professional corporations. It was sometimes referred to as "pick and shovel work." Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1532x1042, 740 KB) Ford Madox Brown, Work (1852–63). ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1532x1042, 740 KB) Ford Madox Brown, Work (1852–63). ... The Last of England, 1855 Ford Madox Brown (April 16, 1821 – October 6, 1893) was an English painter of moral and historical subjects, notable for his distinctively graphic and often Hogarthian version of the Pre-Raphaelite style. ... The Buxton Memorial Fountain, celebrating the emancipation of slaves in the British Empire in 1834, London. ... Peasants plowing in front of a castle, French manuscript c. ... A skill is an ability, usually learned and acquired through training, to perform actions which achieve desired outcome. ... An artisan, also called a craftsman,[1] is a skilled manual worker who uses tools and machinery in a particular craft. ... Citizenship is membership in a political community (originally a city but now usually a country) and carries with it rights to political participation; a person having such membership is a citizen. ...


The phrase hard labour has even become a legal euphemism for penal labour, i.e. a custodial sentence during which the convict is not only confined but also put to manual work; such work may be productive, as on a prison farm, or intrinsically senseless, as with a Treadwheel, the only purpose being the (punishing, therapeutical..) effect of the punishment on the convict. Penal labour is a form of the unfree labour. ... Penal labour or penal servitude is a form of unfree labour. ... A Prison farm is a large correctional facility where hard labor convicts are put to productive use, usually for manual labor, largely in open air, such as in agriculture, logging, quarrying etcetera. ... What is a treadwheel? A treadwheel is a form of Animal engine powered by man. ...


Beginning with the Industrial Revolution, though, the introduction of reliable machinery further lowered the status of labourers. The reduction in status led to the worldwide labour movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries, leading to the formation of trade unions. Further technological progress leads to an increasing segment of manual labour (generally using machinery) requiring more training or even theoretical insight. A Watt steam engine. ... The labour movement (or labor movement) is a broad term for the development of a collective organization of working people, to campaign in their own interest for better treatment from their employers and political governments, in particular through the implementation of specific laws governing labor relations. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... A Trade Union (Labour union) ... is a continuous association of wage-earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment. ...


See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Manual labour - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (335 words)
Manual labour (or manual labor) is physical work done with the hands, especially in an unskilled job such as fruit and vegetable picking, road building, or any other field where the work may be considered physically arduous, and which has as a profitable objective, usually the production of goods.
In ancient times the status of manual labourers was low, as most physical tasks were done by slaves.
The reduction in status led to the worldwide labour movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries, leading to the formation of trade unions.
CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Labour and Labour Legislation (5692 words)
Their labour it was that built the Pyramids, the public works at Lake Moeris, and the Labyrinth; there, too, they were exploited to the limit of physical endurance, just as were the Hebrews by the Egyptian taskmasters of a later period.
While it is very probably true that the poorest section of the manual workers of the later Middle Ages was in a happier condition materially than the poorest workers of to-day, it is also true that the latter have the advantage socially and politically.
When we compare the condition and status of the labouring class during the best days of Greece and Rome with its condition and status to-day, we cannot doubt that the improvement is mostly due to Christianity, and that continued progress will be in proportion to the influence of Christian ideals in the social order.
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