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Is the photograph (Source 15) likely to be a more reliable source of evidence about life on the canals than the painting (source16)?

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Andrew Jefferson Coursework IS THE PHOTOGRAPH (SOURCE15) LIKELY TO BE A MORE RELIABLE SOURCE OF EVIDENCE ABOUT LIFE ON THE CANALS THAN THE PAINTING (SOURCE16)? In my opinion the photograph (source 15) is a more reliable source about life on the canals more than the painting (source 16). In this essay I will write about why I think source 15 is a more reliable source of evidence than source 16. The painting is a snap-shot (taken at the time) and therefore is a primary source. Source 16 is a secondary source of evidence. On the one hand source 15 has limited information, but on the other hand the information it contains can be used and inferred to see how reliable the source actually is. The first thing I noticed in the photograph was the people. I would expect a family to be working on a barge because families needed the money and the companies needed to save money (Companies would pay minimum wage in order to save money, and it is more than like that families would accept the rate because they needed the money) ...read more.


In the background of the photograph there is a house or factory with signs/advertisements on the side, it is likely that these signs are to do with the product producing companies in the industrial towns. I know from my own Knowledge that the canals were a major part of the industries, notice the tow path and how used it is, this shows reliability in the source, I also know that canal life was affected immensely by the industry. This was probably due to higher demands for materials and the canals were one of the best ways to deliver these materials. This would have put pressure on families like these to deliver more, leaving big effects on their lives. It is probably one of the reasons why the people look so unhappy. Again this information was inferred but it does suggest how reliable the source is. I believe this is a strong point, (as are the other points I have made), in how reliable source 15 is and I my opinion, the photograph is a reliable source of evidence. Source 16 (the painting) is different in many ways from source 15 (the photograph). ...read more.


I have also noticed that the women is feeding ducks, and I also know that bargees could not afford to do this either, because of their poor wages. The women is feeding the ducks in a tranquil setting, in her clean clothes, with flowers tied to the chimney, this shows the romantic elements to the painting. On the one hand I believe that this is not believable and the points I have made question how reliable this source is. On the other hand we do not now whether this painting could be by a bargee or someone who has lots of knowledge of canals and canal life. But I know that the painting was made to make money and therefore may not portray the truth about canal life, because not many people would want the truth about life on the canals in their house. In my opinion Source 15 is a reliable piece of evidence in showing what canal life was like, although the information is sketchy. Whereas the other source, source16 is different to source 15 due to its lack of information and truth and there for has no reliability in telling us about life on the canals. Andrew Jefferson 11W History Coursework ...read more.

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