Clicky

Summary | The Modernization of Nations

summary the modernization of nations

During the nineteenth century a sense of patrie, or commonality, brought the French together. A coup d’etat engineered by Louis Napoleon in 1851 ended the Second Republic and gave birth to the Second Empire.

Napoleon III promised to reform but did little to improve the standard of living of the working class. Population expansion and industrial growth were smaller in France than in many other western European nations. The Franco-Prussian War ended the Second Empire.

The United States Becomes a World Power, 1898-1914 | The Modernization of Nations

the united states becomes a world power 1898 1914 the modernization of nations

Quite as clear, though still the subject of complex debate among Americans, was the emergence of the United States as a great international power. From the very beginning it had a department of state and a traditional apparatus of ministers, consuls, and, later, ambassadors.

By the Monroe Doctrine of the 1820s it took the firm position that European powers were not to extend further their existing territories in the Western hemisphere. This was an active expression of American claims to a far wider sphere of influence than the continental United States.

The United States Civil War and Reconstruction, 1861-1877 | The Modernization of Nations

the united states civil war and reconstruction 1861 1877 the modernization of nations

The greatest test of the Federal Union was the war that broke out in 1861 after long years of sectional strife within the union between North and South. The Civil War was really an abortive nationalist revolution, the attempt of the Confederate (Southern) states to set up a separate sovereignty, as the southern Democrats lost political control at the national level.

The United States: Modernization at Top Speed | The Modernization of Nations

the united states modernization at top speed the modernization of nations

Two sets of statistics dramatically point up the speed of American growth. In 1790 the United States comprised 892,000 square miles, and in 1910, 3,754,000 square miles.

Even more important, the population of the United States was 3,929,000 in 1790, and 91,972,000 in 1910—a total greater than that of either of the most powerful European states, Germany and Great Britain, and second only to that of Russia.

And, still more important, the combined industrial and agricultural capacities of America by 1910 were greater than those of any other single country.

The Dumas, 1906-1914 | The Modernization of Nations

the dumas 1906 1914 the modernization of nations

Suffrage for the Duma was universal but indirect. Voters chose an electoral college, which then selected the 412 deputies. Although SRs and SDs boycotted the elections, many of them were elected.

The Kadets were the strongest party. Contrary to the expectations of the government, the peasant vote was highly liberal. But even before the First Duma had met, Witte was able to reduce its powers. He secured a large French loan, which made the government financially independent of the Duma, and issued a set of “fundamental laws,” which the Duma was not to alter.

The Revolution of 1905 | The Modernization of Nations

the revolution of 1905 the modernization of nations

Immediately after the Russo-Japanese War the future Kadets held banquets throughout Russia to adopt a series of resolutions for presentation to a kind of national congress of zemstvo representatives.

Although the congress was not allowed to meet publicly, its program—a constitution, basic civil liberties, class and minority equality, and extension of zemstvo responsibilities—became widely known and approved. The czar issued a statement so vague that all hope for change was dimmed, and took measures to limit free discussion.

The Russo-Japanese War | The Modernization of Nations

the russo japanese war the modernization of nations

Trans-Siberian railway construction made it desirable for the Russians to obtain a right-of-way across Chinese territory in Manchuria.

The Russians took the initiative in preventing Japan from establishing itself on the Chinese mainland after Japan defeated China in 1895; in exchange, Russia then required the Chinese to allow the building of the new railroad. In 1897 Russia seized Port Arthur, the very port it had earlier kept out of Japanese hands. Further friction with the Japanese took place in Korea, in which both Japan and Russia were interested.

Alexander II and Reform, 1855-1881 | The Modernization of Nations

alexander ii and reform 1855 1881 the modernization of nations

The economic developments of the early nineteenth century had rendered the system of serfdom less and less profitable. In the south, where land was fertile and crops were produced for sale as well as for use, the serf usually tilled his master’s land three days a week, but sometimes more. In the north, where the land was less fertile and could not produce a surplus, the serfs often had a special arrangement with their masters called quit-rent.

Nicholas I, 1825-1855 | The Modernization of Nations

nicholas i 1825 1855 the modernization of nations

Reactionary and autocratic, literal-minded and devoted to military engineering, Nicholas I worked hard at the business of the state. Although he despised all constitutions, he honored the liberal constitution that his elder brother Alexander had granted to the Poles until the Poles themselves revolted in 1831.

Minorities in Hungary | The Modernization of Nations

minorities in hungary the modernization of nations

In Hungary minority problems were more acute. The Slovaks, the Romanians, and the Serbs and Croats living in Hungary were the worst victims of a deliberate policy of Magyarization. The Magyar aim was to destroy the national identity of the minorities and to transform them into Magyars; the weapon used was language.

Imperial Germany, 1871-1914 | The Modernization of Nations

imperial germany 1871 1914 the modernization of nations

Even before this peace had been imposed, King William of Prussia was proclaimed emperor of Germany. When a constitution for the new empire was adopted, it was simply an extension of the constitution of the North German Confederation of 1867.

As chancellor of the German Empire from 1871 to 1890, Bismarck became the leading statesman in Europe. As diplomat, he worked for the preservation of Germany’s gains against threats from abroad, especially by any foreign coalition against Germany. As politician, he worked for the preservation of the Prussian system against all opposing currents.

War and the Strengthening of German Nationhood, 1863-1871 | The Modernization of Nations

When the king of Denmark died in late 1863, a controversy over Schleswig-Holstein gave Bismarck further opportunities. In brief, the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein at the southern base of the Danish peninsula had been ruled by the king of Denmark, but not as part of Denmark.

A fifteenth-century guarantee assured the duchies that they could never be separated from one another. Yet Holstein to the south was a member of the German Confederation; Schleswig to the north was not. Holstein was mostly German in population; Schleswig was mixed German and Danish.

Prussia and the German Confederation, 1848-1862 | The Modernization of Nations

The first major question facing the leaders of central Europe after the revolutions of 1848 was whether Prussia or Austria would dominate the German Confederation. The “Big German” solution called for federation with Austria; the “Little German” solution called for separation from Austria or even from south Germany. The “Little German” program also meant Prussian domination of the non-Austrian states, and therefore became Bismarck’s goal.

Italy and Union, 1849-1914 | The Modernization of Nations

italy and union 1849 1914 the modernization of nations

Italian national unity seemed remote after Piedmont’s two decisive defeats by Austria in 1848 and 1849, yet it was accomplished by 1870.

The three leaders of the Risorgimento in its years of triumph were the romantic nationalist adventurer Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882); Victor Emmanuel II of the house of Savoy (1849-1878), king of Piedmont-Sardinia (and later of a united Italy); and, above all, Victor Emmanuel’s chief minister, Count Camillo Cavour (1810-1861).

France: A Second Empire, A Third Republic | The Modernization of Nations

france a second empire a third republic the modernization of nations

Sometime between 1850 and the outbreak of World War I in 1914, rural France joined urban France in expressing a common sense of identity—nationhood.

By the end of the century popular and elite cultures were united in their sense of patrie (fatherland), of nationality, even when they continued to disagree over the nation’s goals. The modernization of France at times set one French group against another; equally often, as external forces appeared to threaten France, it strengthened the sense of common identity and community.

The Modernization of Nations

the modernization of nations

In recent years Historians have often asked whether the best unit for study is a society or a nation, since many questions relating broadly to demography and society cannot be properly addressed within a single nation’s bor
ders.