Home » Languages » English (Sr. Secondary) » Essay, Paragraph or Speech on “Dignity of Labour” Complete Essay, Speech for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Essay, Paragraph or Speech on “Dignity of Labour” Complete Essay, Speech for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Dignity of Labour

Essay No. 01

“In the sweat of thy face thou shalt earn thy bread” was the Divine Judgment on the Fallen Man. Ever since man has been labouring hard to keep himself alive. He digs, drives and drags, tills the soil, works at the mill and does a lot of other things to keep his body and soul together. He may find his work hard and unpleasant, but there is no escape from it; it is necessary, universal and inevitable. Life and labour are inseparable.

When life was simple and society less complex, the high and the low alike had to do manual work as a matter of course. But it is no longer so. The indignity attached to manual work is the outcome of the division of labour. The complex nature of the modern society and the introduction of machinery have helped to perpetuate and increase this sense of indignity. It is only when some works are reserved for a few while the rest are given to the common man that the distinction arises. It is only when some men grow rich, powerful and important and find manual work too hard for them, that they set it apart for the common people. These people in due course of time come to be regarded as inferior. Later, the relation of master and servants is established. However, the contempt which master felt for their paid workers gradually came to be transformed from men to their work. When machines came to do those works, which had been formerly done by hand, man who continued to do those works were regarded no better than lifeless machines and were looked down upon. This is how in course of time some works were regarded low and undignified.

It is a sad state of affairs. For the foundation of all good works there must be joy and sense of honour. We can never do a work well if we are constantly reminded that the work we are doing is mean and humiliating. We must be convinced that the work is useful and honourable. We must feel joy in doing it. So men, who are engaged in manual labour, must be made to feel the worth of their work and the joy and honour to be derived from it. Honour is a legitimate spur and is its own reward.

So men occupying higher positions began to preach the dignity of labour in order to get work done by the workers. The simple and the uneducated labourers came to believe in the truth of the assertion. The moment they realized the truth, no more did they feel themselves depressed, unfortunate and inferior; no more their work appeared humiliating. A new consciousness of power was felt and a new throbbing of life was perceived. They began to do not only work but also felt a new sense of dignity, strength and solidarity. Hence, behind the vast organization and power of labouring class in modern times, there is this growing conviction of the value and dignity of labour. The dignity of labour is now recognized at least as a policy.

The distinction between one work as noble and another as ignoble is purely a man-made one. All works rank the same because each has its own use, value and purpose in a social, economic and political organization. If this be so, there is no logic in looking down upon manual labour. The man who drives the plough is as important in his place as he who rules a kingdom. There are different kinds of work, no doubt, one requiring more brain and the other more brawn, but that is no reason why one should be regarded as dishonourable and ignoble and the other honourable. Each has its worth in its own place and therefore each is noble.

On manual labour depends the life of the world. Who can deny dignity to that kind of labour which feeds and clothes mankind, does harm to nobody and is as old as human existence ? And there is no logic in looking down upon those who are engaged in such a work ? Older than all preached gospels is the unpreached, ever-enduring gospel, laborer —Work is Worship.


Essay No. 02

The Dignity of Labour

Outline: The meaning of the phrase – the dignity of labour not appreciated in India – a legacy of the British system of education – conclusion.

All forms of labour are valuable and should be respected. This is the essential meaning of the phrase ‘dignity of labour.’ Jobs involving manual labour should not be looked down upon. One has a right to dislike them and not to take to them if they really do not suit one’s temperament, but that is no reason why they and the people who earn an honest living by doing them should he held in contempt. Nor should one fight shy of doing manual work on account of a false sense of prestige. It should be realised that all forms of labour contribute to the welfare of society.

Many educated men in India do not appreciate and practise the principle of the dignity of labour. They prefer white – collar jobs to other kinds of work involving manual labour, even though the latter are more easily available and more lucrative. For example, an Arts graduate who is the son of a prosperous farmer, would like to be a clerk in a city bank rather than follow his father’s profession. In spite of the fact that there is more demand for turners, fitters, and technicians, our young men continue to qualify themselves for sedentary posts which are limited in number. The tendency to avoid manual labour is also noticeable in the domestic sphere. It is supposed to be infra dig for the lady of the house to do domestic chores like washing clothes or scrubbing pots. The ‘in’ thing is to employ servants to do such work. In large cities where servants are scarce and demand exorbitant wages, many middle class families have to pay through their nose in order to maintain their so – called prestige or dignity.

This antipathy to manual labour is partly a legacy of the British system of education. One of the objects of that system of education was to produce clerks and petty officers without whose aid the administration could not be run. Educated Indians vied with one another to become white – collared employees of the Government, neglecting independent ways of earning a living. This tendency still persists to a considerable extent, and many an educated youth is reluctant to take up a job which involves physical labour or field work. In many Western countries, particularly in America, dignity of labour is recognised. Students do not mind earning money by doing part -time work as lift – men or waiters at restaurants. Much of the domestic work like cooking food and washing clothes is done by the members of the family.

A sense of dignity of labour should be instilled into the young in schools, and colleges. They should be encouraged to participate in slum clearance or rural uplift programmes. If their minds are cleared of the notion that certain kinds of labour are undignified, the problem of unemployment will be solved to some extent.

Essay No. 03

Dignity of Labour

A work should be considered inferior or lowly. All men work to earn their living. If one is a business man, the other is a serviceman. If one is a lawyer, the other is a doctor. A labourer has to work either on the field or on the roadside. They may find their job hard yet it has its own dignity. The indignity attached to manual work is the outcome of division of labour. Those people who grow rich and powerful do easy jobs. They find manual work hard and keep it for the common man. They forget that the work done by the common man is more important. The labourer, the peasant, the sweeper and factory workers are the back bone of the society. It is these people who give us food to eat, house to live in and clothes to put on. The work done by this class of the society should not be sneered at. Otherwise they will not derive happiness from their jobs. Men who are engaged in manual work must be made to feel that their labour is not undignified. It is on their manual labour that the life of the world depends.


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