EUROPE AND AMERICA Forces for Change, 1890-1914
Major Forces for Change • More education for more people • Industry overtakes agriculture • Industrial growth – prosperity and labor • Shortened distances and faster communications • Growth of “scientific knowledge” • European empires
UNITED STATES • Resources of most of a continent • Large and growing industry • Peaceful neighbors (Canada and Mexico) • Protected by oceans from other powers • A tradition of neutrality in relation to the nations of Europe
Europe in 1914 Europe was divided by many nations, ethnicities and ideas.
The Great Powers • Britain – largest empire and navy • Germany -- recently unified (1871) and ambitious for colonies and navy • France – Only republic, an issue with Germany (war in 1870) • Austria – Old empire, much divided by ethnic differences, worried about SE Europe • Russia – Fastest growing in industry and population, major internal problems
Alliances • Germany is allied with Austria and Italy in the “Triple Alliance” to check Russia and France • France and Russia allied in the Entente to check Germany • Britain is not allied, but is worried about Germany’s growing navy and trade with rest of world
Victoria TRADITIONAL LEADERSHIPS Queen Victoria, Britain, 1837-1901, by 1900 was the grandmother of many European monarchs.
George and Nick George V, King of Britain in 1914 (right) Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia, in 1914 (left)
Wilhelm Wilhelm (William) II, the Kaiser of Germany, ca. 1910 – first cousin to both Nicholas II and George V
Aristocracy The Aristocracy controlled much of the wealth, more of the power, in Europe
Mass education Mass education – expanded opportunity for more people
Women and education Women particularly benefited from larger school expenditures – literacy of woman more than quadrupled from 1860-1900 in Europe, tripled in U.S.
Nationalism Schools were important for teaching Nationalism – France, rather than Loraine, etc.
Industry Industrial growth meant greater production but also major changes in society
Middle Class A rising middle class reflected the growth of a nation’s economy
Painting by Seurat Middle class – clerks, businessmen, sales force – more leisure time
Consumer Goods What only the wealthy once enjoyed, middle class now had
Peasants – Van Gogh Factory values exceeded agricultural wealth in many countries
Labor force Industrial labor force – major change in societies that had been largely rural
Child labor Labor forces (such as this 1870s shoe factory) contained adults and children – poor families resisted the enforcement of child labor laws
Photography Photography documented the hard lives of many workers
Riis German immigrant Jacob Riis – photos of poverty in New York
Social justice Riis photos ran in newspapers and in his book, prompting new efforts at “social justice
Poverty There was still considerable poverty, and beggars were common sights on the streets of major cities and towns.
Socialism In 1891, Leo XIII, a conservative, issued the Rerum Novarum – a call for “just wages” and the recognition of trade unions. Laborers called him the “Workers’ Pope.”
Marxism Marxism called for the violent overthrow of wealth and capitalism and the establishment of a “workers’ state.”
Socialism Various forms of “gradual socialism” were proposed in place of Marxism – creating a better society through political parties, voting and government regulation of the state and the economy
Military Costs Marxists and socialists generally opposed war, arguing that military costs prevented the improvement of the economy. British battleship, HMS Dreadnought
Mass Communications Politics was now influenced by mass communications; newspapers could alter public opinion and government policies.
TR The war in Cuba made a national hero (and eventually president) of Theodore Roosevelt
Trains Modern armies could be speedily deployed by trains and directed by telegraph
Colonies –modern technology enabled European nations to control colonies around the world U.S. had “territories rather than colonies
Titanic Absolute faith in modern technology was seriously shaken in 1912.
Russo-Japanese war In 1904, tensions between Russia and Japan (over China) led to war.
Russian defeat Russia’s defeat in the war shocked the entire world
“Modernity” Old ideas: Authority derived from faith or ancient wisdomBehavior a matter of good and evilThe universe was a matter of mechanics – “laws of motion” New ideas: Old wisdom is now questioned, frequently discardedBehavior is a matter of “hidden, biological impulses” The universe is much more complex and “chance” plays a a large part in it – Does God play dice with the universe?
Darwin Since the 1860s, Darwin’s theories of evolution had frightened the traditional basis of western religion.
Freud The research of Freud questioned the traditional “good-evil” basis of behavior
Laws of physical dynamics Bohr’s concept of the atom, Einstein’s theory of relativity, and the idea of “quantum mechanics” made understanding the universe difficult
SUMMARY • The major nations of Europe are ‘modern” but the pace of change has created much tension • Rivalries among powers are intense • Social differences within nations are often intensified by ethnic differences • Alliances exist that could trigger a widespread war