The Rise of the Nation-State

  • Political leaders driven to consolidate power
  • By 1871 the process of consolidation and unification had created modern Germany and Italy, altering the balance of power
  • The struggle between states for land and wealth occurred primarily outside Europe through imperialism
  • The process of expanding a nation’s territory through the acquisition of colonies and dependencies.
  • The ideology of nationalism linked the individuals identity with the state, connecting his/her sense of pride, prestige and power with the internal and external strength of the nation.
  • Success of a nation did not depend upon national sentiment, but political leaders had to be able to harness the power of the people’s pride in the state in pursuit of national objectives.
  • What is an example of political leaders attempting to harness the people’s pride to pursue an objective?

Louis Napoleon Bonaparte

  • No longer a monarchy, but a republic.
  • A state in which supreme power is held by the people or its elected representatives and not by a monarch
  • Ruled as president from 1848-1852
  • As emperor as Napoleon III from 1852-1870 during the time of prosperity in which Paris was restored as the diplomatic and cultural capital Europe
  • Ended in disaster

Louis Napoleon Bonaparte III (1808-1873)

  • Prussia overwhelming victory over France in 1870 brought Napoleon III and has Second Empire to an end
  • Resulted in modern Germany as the dominant power in Central Europe
  • On Dec. 1-2 1871, the army occupied Paris and the police arrested 78 National Assembly deputies
  • Army killed 200 rioters on Dec. 4, while suppressing a left wing uprising in Paris.
  • During the rule of Napoleon III, the French populace seemed content of democracy.
  • The economy was prosperous, as the boom in railroad construction had a multiplier effect that stimulated French industries and generated employment
  • Created “Credit Mobilier”, an investment trust in which citizens deposited savings, which in turn financed industrial development
  • What does that resemble today?
  • By 1860, financial scandals, dissent over foreign policy and reawakened political criticism
  • Napoleon responded by liberalizing reforms that:
  • relaxed controls on the press,
  • allowed freer debate in legislative assembly,
  • made ministers more responsible to elected representatives,
  • reduced the influence of the church on education,
  • made schools more accessible to females and
  • legalized trade unions and the right to strike.

Modern Germany: The Role of Key Individuals

  • From 1815-1848, liberal nationalists dreamed of the creation of a unified Germany under a liberal constitution
  • Significant political obstacles
  • German confederation of 1815 brought together 39 states, including the larger and more powerful Prussia and Austria
  • purpose of the confederation was not to unite German states but to preserve the existing political structure of small states ruled by absolutist
  • Economic and social development had begun to break down some of the divisions between Prussia and Austria
  • 1834, customs union, brought the northern German states, including Prussia but excluding Austria, into a closer economic association.
  • “Greater Germans” are those who favoured the inclusion of Austria, were drawn largely from southern Catholic regions
  • “Lesser Germans” are those who favoured the exclusion of Austria and looked to Prussian leadership, were drawn largely from northern Protestant areas

Britain 1867-1894

  • Mid-1860, the issue of the voting and the question of when, by whom and to whom
  • Throughout the second half of the first nineteenth century, Britain witness a struggle between the forces of change.
  • Social reform and the forces of continuity, in support for the monarchy and other conservative traditions
  • Gladstone won the electorate campaign in 1880 and gave his liberals a majority
  • Lord Salisbury became the dominate party in Britain for the next two decades due to Gladstone’s Irish Home Rule bill
author avatar
William Anderson (Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team)
William completed his Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts in 2013. He current serves as a lecturer, tutor and freelance writer. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, walking his dog and parasailing. Article last reviewed: 2022 | St. Rosemary Institution © 2010-2024 | Creative Commons 4.0

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