pg 975-992 - Pages 975-992 GROWING TENSIONS IN MASS...

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Pages 975-992 GROWING TENSIONS IN MASS POLITICS Labor’s Expanding Power o Workers in England avidly read works by Shakespeare and took literally his calls for political action in the cause of justice o Unions gained members among factory workers, while the Labor and Socialists Parties won seats in parliaments as men in the lower classes received the vote Through continuous grassroots organizing at the local level, the Social Democratic Party, founded by German socialists in 1875, became the largest parliamentary group in the Reichstag by 1912 o Growing strength raised issues for socialists Some felt uncomfortable sitting with the upper classes in parliaments Others worried that their participation as heads of governmental ministries would produce reform but compromise their ultimate goal of revolution o Powerful German Marxists argued that such reformism would only buttress capitalism and rule by the wealthy, who would continue to rule while throwing small crumbs to a few working-class politicians o Some working-class parties were forced to operate in exile because they were utterly excluded form mass politics The Russian government outlawed political parties, persecuted activists, and gave the vote to only a limited number of men when It finally introduced a parliament in 1905 Russian activist V.I. Lenin migrated to western Europe after his release from confinement to Siberia and earned a reputation among Marxists for hard-hitting journalism and political intrigue o Lenin advanced the theory that a highly disciplined socialist elite would lead a lightly industrialized Russia immediately into socialism o At a 1903 party meeting of Russian Marxists, he briefly gained the upper hand when a group of his opponents walked out of the proceedings In ensuring votes, Lenin’s supporters eked out slim victories for control of the party and his faction of the Bolsheviks constantly struggled to suppress the Mensheviks Rights for Women and the Battle of Suffrage o Women continued to agitate for the benefits of liberalism such as the right to their wages and to parliamentary representation o In most countries women couldn’t vote, exercise free speech, or own property if married Laws in France, Austria and Germany curtailed women’s political activism and even made their attendance at political meetings a crime Activism aimed to achieve the German cultural ideal of Bildung – the belief that education can build character and that individual development has public importance In several countries, women continued to monitor the regulation of prostitution Their goal was to prevent prostitutes from being imprisoned on suspicion of having syphilis when men with syphilis faced no such incarceration o By the 1890s, many activists concluded that only the right to vote would correct the problems caused by male privilege that they were combating in piecemeal fashion
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Suffragists created major organizations involving millions of activists, paid
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course HIST 1010 taught by Professor Frazier during the Fall '05 term at Western Michigan.

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pg 975-992 - Pages 975-992 GROWING TENSIONS IN MASS...

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