In the early 19th century, the design and mainstream nature of clocks were an early indicator that work was going to be different. Before this, there were not many ways of keeping workers and work times synced up between factories. In the passage, it tells us that Jerome created the first brass clock that could be bought by virtually every American. This really introduced the idea that people should run on schedules and workers should work in allotted time frames. Jerome’s invention was extremely influential, as time management, something preached to high school students today, was one of the most important aspects when looking at the issue regarding time and the clock. After this invention was produced, it became apparent that more businesses were interested in running operations through a time-chain, and this increased the efficiency in the factory.
However, the clock also made its way into homes. Like many inventions, the clock started out primarily for factory use but then households started to find a use for them. So therefore, manufacturing and culture are definitely intertwined, at least in the early 19th century. According to the book, there were other inventions that really affected the manufacturing space, such as interchangeable parts. However, I cannot find an invention that changed both the culture, or the way Americans lived, and the factory simultaneously. I believe that this affected Americans because it made them more reared towards what we know today as time management. Before the clock made its way into households, Americans would not check the time and would estimate when they were supposed to be somewhere. This most likely changed when the clock became a symbol of the culture. The clock represents a move from slow manufacturing to rigid and methodology-driven manufacturing. It also represents a change in the culture, as most Americans probably paid more attention to the time rather than ignore it and estimate what time it was.
Imagining a time in my life where I would not refer to any time mechanism is hard to imagine because I would not know when my day would start. First and foremost, I need to depend on an alarm clock to get up in the morning. Without my alarm clock I am probably sleeping until 1 pm or later. Therefore, the alarm clock is extremely important to my everyday schedule, because without it my schedule is completely ruined and changed as I’d miss all of my classes and activities. Additionally, not having a clock would be hard for me to know when to go to my next class, when school ends, and when I should go to sleep. People depend on clocks to understand what they should do next and when they should leave somewhere. Without the existence of clocks, or time, we’d need to use more subjective points of reasoning, such as where the sun is positioned and how hot it was outside. Moreover, this would lead to people being late to work and to classes, as they would not know if it was 2 pm or 3 pm or 4 pm. Obviously, one who practices telling the time from the sun would get better, but it is just too hard to remember where the sun is positioned to exactly pinpoint what time it is.
Overall, this chapter allowed me to understand how important the clock is in our daily lives. The clock is an outlet that allows us to tell time and understand where we are supposed to be in that moment of time. The clock as become such a big part of the culture that I am unsure of how people would react if it were to suddenly disappear.