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HIST303: The Age of Revolutions in the Atlantic World, 1776–1848

Unit 6: The Effects of Revolution   The Atlantic world of 1776 looked very different from the Atlantic world that emerged in 1848.  France was no longer an absolutist monarchy.  America was no longer a collection of British colonies, but an independent nation whose economy was becoming one of the largest in the world.  Saint-Domingue had been transformed from a French colony in the Caribbean into the free republic of Haiti.  New Spain had been dismantled, and new republics and federations in Central and South America had risen in its place.  The Industrial Revolution had transformed Western Europe 1848 had seen an explosion of revolutionary discontent throughout Europe.  But revolutions did not guarantee the implementation of democratic principles and the end of oppressive regimes.  In fact, in many regions, tyranny either returned or persisted; freedom of the people was never assured.
       
In this unit, you will consider the Atlantic world in the wake of the revolutionary age and compare and contrast the revolutions in Europe and the Americas.  You will also consider how revolutionaries ended their respective revolutions as well as how they remembered them.

Unit 6 Time Advisory
Time Advisory: This unit should take you approximately 3 hours to complete.

☐    Subunit 6.1: 1.75 hours

☐    Subunit 6.2: 1.25 hours

Unit6 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to: - evaluate the various types of revolutionary and other social movements presented in this course in a comparative framework; - describe and identify the long-term effects of the major changes, resulting from revolution, covered in this course; and - define the notion of revolution and describe its varied meanings.

6.1 The World Economic System after Industrialization   - Reading: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: “Summary of Wallerstein on World System Theory” Link: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: “Summary of Wallerstein on World System Theory” (HTML)

 Instructions: Read the this text.  This text is a brief
introduction to American sociologist Immanuel Wallerstein’s
methodology, which is based on world-systems rather than
nation-states.  Remember that the world-system analysis method is
key for the understanding the evolution of the modern world.  
    
 Reading this text should take approximately 30 minutes.  
    
 Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use
displayed on the webpage above.
  • Reading: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Adam Smith’s “The Principle of the Mercantile System” Link: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Adam Smith’s “The Principle of the Mercantile System” (HTML)

    Instructions: Read this text.  Remember that Smith argued that free trade would lead to the international specialization of labor, and subsequently to great well-being for all nations.

    As you read, consider the following study question: Why did Adam Smith oppose Mercantilism?

    Reading this text and answering the question above should take approximately 30 minutes.

    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: “Pamphlet: In Defence of Laissez-Faire” Link: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: “Pamphlet: In Defence of Laissez-Faire” (HTML)

    Instructions: Study this pamphlet. Remember that the French sentence laissez-faire translates in English to “let [them] do,” or in other words “let them do as they will.”

    Reading this text should take approximately 45 minutes.

    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

6.2 Comparing Revolutions   6.2.1 The Americas in 1848   - Reading: The Saylor Foundation’s “The United States and the 1848 Revolutions” Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “The United States and the 1848 Revolutions” (PDF)
 
Instructions: Read “The United States and the 1848 Revolutions.” Remember that the 1848 Revolutions had a deep impact on both sides of the Atlantic. Numerous reforms that took place in America, such as the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, were a direct result of the 1848 European upheavals.
 
As you read, consider the following study question: Was the Civil War America’s answer to the 1848 Revolutions? Explain your reasoning.

 Reading this text and answering the question above should take
approximately 30 minutes.

6.2.2 Europe in 1848   - Reading: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Carl Schurz’s “A Look Back at 1848” Link: Fordham University’s Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Carl Schurz’s “A Look Back at 1848” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read this text.  This reading by Carl Schurz is a first-hand account of the 1848 revolution in Germany.

 As you read, consider the following study question: How does he
describe democracy?  
    
 Reading this text and answering the question above should take
approximately 15 minutes.  
    
 Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use
displayed on the webpage above.

6.2.3 Revolution and the Modern World   - Reading: The Saylor Foundation’s “Revolutions and the Modern World” Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Revolutions and the Modern World” (PDF)
 
Instructions: Read this text.  In this document, you will learn about the most important theories regarding the causes and nature of revolutions.  While reading this text, remember that scholars did not only formulate these theories to better explain past phenomena but to understand events in their own times and to predict future and possibly catastrophic upheavals.

 As you read, consider the following study question: Are the basics
of these theories still valid and relevant today?  Explain your
reasoning.  
    
 Reading this text and answering the question above should take
approximately 30 minutes.