How did the eight hour working day come into being, and is it still relevant to us today? In this episode the Burning Archive begins responding to the questions posed by Freya Rich in episode 22 A Canon of One’s Own. In a mini-series of seven episodes Jeff Rich will talk about the topics Freya identified about history that she would like to know more about or feel we ought to know more about. This episode covers
- The working day before the industrial revolution
- The century when the eight hour day emerged in response to the industrial revolution and other global transformations of the 19th century
- The meaning of the eight hour day to these workers – a “sacred boon” – as it was celebrated in Victoria
- The working day in the stressed out contemporary world after the “fourth industrial revolution”
Other Burning Archive posts on the eight hour day include On the history and meaning of the eight hour day.
Credit: Nina Simone, “Work Song”