23 Outline - Outline The Industrial Revolution created new...

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Outline The Industrial Revolution created new economic structures; the changes rivaled those brought by the Neolithic revolution. All aspects of human life were touched. European power rose, and extensions of Western civilization developed in other lands. Optimism in Chaos. In the book, Progress of the Human Mind, the French writer Marquis de Condorcet concluded that progress was inevitable, that humankind was on the verge of perfection. His prediction turned out to be only partially correct. The Age of Revolution. Even before industrialization, new ideas and social pressures caused a series of social and political revolutions in the West. Forces of Change. A series of political revolutions began in 1775 with the American Revolution and continued with the French Revolution of 1789, and later lesser revolutions. Major trends reversed previous quieter eighteenth-century European themes. Intellectual ferment was high beneath the calm eighteenth-century surface. Enlightenment thinkers challenged the existing order and opened a gap between intellectuals and established institutions. They were joined by businesspeople in encouraging economic and technical change. Another source of disruption was the effect of a huge population increase. Upper-class families, to protect their more numerous children, tightened their grip on public offices. Business families were more willing to take risks. Rural families were forced into the proletariat. The population growth stimulated a rapid expansion of domestic manufacturing and consumerism. Youthful independence grew as the possibility of inheritance from parents declined. Sexual behavior, especially among the lower social classes, altered, with premarital sex rapidly increasing the number of out-of-wedlock births. The American Revolution. American colonists after 1763 resisted British attempts to impose new taxes and trade controls and to restrict westward movement. Young men seeking new opportunities turned against the older colonial leadership. Revolution followed in 1775. British strategic mistakes and French assistance helped Americans to win independence. In 1789, they created a new constitutional structure based on Enlightenment principles. The revolution, by extending male voting rights, created the world's most democratic society. Social change was more limited: slavery continued. Crisis in France in 1789. In France, ideological fervor for change had been growing from the middle of the eighteenth century. Enlightenment thinkers called for limitations on aristocratic and church power and for increased voice for ordinary citizens. Middle-class people wanted a greater political role, while peasants desired freedom from landlord exactions. Growing commercial activity created a market economy, affecting many individuals. The government and ruling elite proved incapable of reform. Louis XVI called a meeting of the long-ignored traditional parliament but lost control of events to middle-class representatives during 1789. The
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This note was uploaded on 09/28/2010 for the course HIST WHAP taught by Professor Albano during the Spring '10 term at Clear Creek.

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23 Outline - Outline The Industrial Revolution created new...

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