Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Humanitarianism is the view that all people should be treated with the respect and dignity they deserve as human beings, and that advancing the well-being of humanity is a noble goal. Humanitarianism is the antithesis of the "us vs. them" mentality that characterizes tribalism and ethnic nationalism. Humanitarians abhor slavery, cannibalism, and discrimination on the basis of features such as color of skin, ancestry, place of birth, etc. Humanitarianism is embraced by movements and people across the political spectrum, and particularly (but not exclusively) by leftists.
Humanitarianism was probably most publicly seen in the social reforms of the late 1800s and early 1900s, following the economoic turmoil of the Industrial Revolution in England. The atrocious hours and working conditions of children and unskilled laborers was made illegal by pressure on Parliament by humanitarians. The Factory Acts of 1833 and 1844 were some of the greatest humanitarian bills passed in Parliament following the Industrial Revolution.
A Humanitarian is one who is devoted to human welfare.
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