World Civilization II (essay questions)

question

Discuss the industrial revolution in Europe in terms of where it began, why it began there, main achievements, and significant effects.
answer

Although Western Europe had long had the basic trappings of capitalism (private property, wealth accumulation, contracts), the Industrial Revolution fueled the creation of a truly modern capitalist system. Widespread of credit, business corporations, investments and large-scale stock markets all became common. Britain led the way in this transformation. By the 1780s, the British Industrial Revolution, which had been developing for several decades, began to further accelerate. Manufacturing, business, and the number of wage laborers skyrocketed, starting a trend that would continue into the first half of the 19th century. Meanwhile, technology changed: hand tools were replaced by steam- or electricity-driven machines. The economic transformation brought about the British industrial revolution was accompanied by a social transformation as well. Population boomed, and demographics shifted. Because industrial resources like coal and iron were in Central and Northern England, a shift in population from Southern England northward took place. Northern cities like Manchester grew tremendously. These changes in social and demographic realities created vast pressure for political change as well. The first act to protect workers went into affect in 1802 (though in practice it did very little). Pressure to redress the lack of representation for the new industrial cities and the newly wealthy industrial manufacturers also began to build.
question

Discuss nationalism in the 19th century Europe in terms of its meaning, some of its positive and negative implications, and some examples of its implementation.
answer

Nationalism has been an important factor in the development of Europe. In the 19th century, a wave of romantic nationalism swept the continent of Europe transforming the countries of the continent. Some new countries, such as Germany and Italy were formed by uniting smaller states with a common \”national identity\”. Others, such as Romania, Greece, Poland and Bulgaria, were formed by winning their independence. The invention of a symbolic national identity became the concern of racial, ethnic or linguistic groups throughout Europe as they struggled to come to terms with the rise of mass politics, the decline of the traditional social elites, popular discrimination and xenophobia. Within the Habsburg empire the different peoples developed a more mass-based, violent and exclusive form of nationalism. This developed even among the Germans and Magyars, who actually benefited from the power-structure of the empire. On the European periphery, especially in Ireland and Norway, campaigns for national independence became more strident. In 1905 Norway won independence from Sweden, but attempts to grant Ireland the kind of autonomy enjoyed by Hungary foundered on the national divisions on the island between the Catholic and Protestant populations. The Polish attempts to win independence from Russia had previously proved to be unsuccessful, with Poland being the only country in Europe whose autonomy was gradually limited rather than expanded throughout the 19th century, as a punishment for the failed uprisings; in 1831 Poland lost its status as a formally independent state and was merged into Russia as a real union country and in 1867 she became nothing more than just another Russian province. Faced with internal and external resistance to assimilation, as well as increased xenophobic anti-Semitism, radical demands began to develop among the stateless Jewish population of eastern and central Europe for their own national home and refuge. In 1897, inspired by the Hungarian-born Jewish nationalist Theodor Herzl, the First Zionist Congress was held in Basle, and declared their national ‘home’ should be in Palestine. By the end of the period, the ideals of European nationalism had been exported worldwide and were now beginning to develop, and both compete and threaten the empires ruled by colonial European nation-states. Nationalism isdevotion and loyalty to one’s own nation; patriotism.

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