Conservapedia:World History Lecture Nine
World History – Revolution, Nationalism and Industrialization
Instructor, Andy Schlafly
Outline of Lecture:
|As Christianity continued to grow in the 1700s, many around the world came to the same conclusion: we want our own country rather than taking orders from a king. But kings resisted these demands for independence by the people, and revolutions became necessary to overthrow kings.||
Well here we are at Andy's long-awaited lecture on the nineteenth century. In order to reach that epoch-changing period, though, we must first plod through a confusing mess consisting of the English Civil War, the Enlightenment, and generally jump back and forth throughout three centuries of European history with little explanation why. A lot of this stuff should have been included in the previous Lecture, and had Andy cut out a lot of the drivel which characterised his last laughable effort, he would have had more than enough room to do so. It's unclear why he chose not to. Anyway, let's get on with this. Lecture Nine - revolutions. The reactionary forces of Conservapedia, under the command of the hated General Schlafly d'Illinois, are massing to crush our noble stand for Historical Truth. To the barricades, comrades! Unfurl the flags, prime your muskets, and chant the slogans of the Revolution as we drive the anti-progressives back into the medieval mudpuddle which spawned them! Someone put on a CD of T-Rex.
"No you won't, fool, the Children of the Revolution! No you won't, fool, the Children..."Great way to start a lecture, Andy. Crediting Christianity with political upheaval. This is in spite of the fact that in 1 Romans 13:1-5, Saint Paul explicitly orders us to obey whatever authorities are over us, as they were maneouvered into their position by God. Thus revolutions - including Andy's beloved American Revolution - are disrespectful to the Lord, and are therefore tantamount to pissing all over God's feet. Ooh, that's gonna earn Andy a few extra jabs from Satan's pitchfork.
|In the 1600s in England, there was some of the worst religious persecution in the history of the world, as Protestants harshly persecuted each other and there was also continuous conflict between Protestants and Catholics. The conflict between Anglicans and Puritans in England was particularly severe, causing many Puritans to flee to New England. Quakers were also persecuted in England, and William Penn founded the state of Pennsylvania in the late 1600s after being persecuted in England for his Quaker faith. In 1688, a “bloodless” revolution known as the “Glorious Revolution” replaced a rare Catholic English king (James II) with a king and queen who were Anglican (William and Mary).||Dear, dear. Protestants persecuting one another? But aren't they all brothers in Christ? Evidently not, as the historical record demonstrates. Andy misrepresents the Glorious Revolution of 1688. While there were religious issues at stake, the dominant factor was that Parliament had been steadily growing in power since the Civil War, but James II tried to govern without Parliament. Fearing a return to Absolute Monarchy, Parliament invited the Dutch Prince of Orange, William, to come and reign instead. He did, and knowing that he lacked popular support to defeat the Dutchman, James II fled into exile. William and Mary were made King and Queen of the United Kingdom, but in exchange for receiving this rather cushy position for free, they had to agree to rule according to the wishes of Parliament. Really, Andy. This sort of thing isn't hard to find out.|
|In the 1700s, all the revolutions were quite bloody, entailing violence and great losses of life and limb. Nearly every region of the world saw violent revolutions. There was the American Revolution, which began with bloodshed in 1775 (Lexington and Concord and the ride of Paul Revere), and then the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, and ultimately the conclusion with the Treaty of Paris in 1783. There were also many other revolutions, including ones in Mexico, Haiti, South America, China and France. We will learn about all of them here, spending most of our time on the French Revolution.||If you listen carefully, you can hear the grinding of Andy's teeth as he forces himself to acknowledge the freedom struggles of non-whites, non-Christians, and Les Francais. It'll be curious to find out why he spends most of his time on the French Revolution, to the detriment of the American Revolution. Probably so he can just bitch about the French, and not piss off god any more than is necessary by reminding Jesus that America is a foul, heretical nation which rebelled against its divinely-appointed king.|
|Beginning in 1800, a new leader had a dramatic effect on Europe: Napoleon Bonaparte, known to the world as simply Napoleon. He possessed a combination of military genius, unlimited ambition, leadership and a brilliant overall mind like Alexander the Great of the ancient Greek world. Napoleon had an ambition and drive that were so great that the term “Napoleonic complex” is still used today to describe a power-hungry, diminutive person intent on taking over everything in sight. But just as Alexander the Great could not capture India and the Mongols could not take Japan, Napoleon could not conquer Russia in the wintertime. Over a century later, the German Adolf Hitler also failed in a similar attempt. Once Napoleon failed, other nations in Europe began to rise in power.||Well at least Andy managed to mention a hero of his without comparing him to Jesus. A lot of points off for getting "Napoleonic (sic) complex" wrong. Napoleon was not small, he was 5'7" - above average height for a European of that time. Finally, Andy's starry-eyed adoration of L'Empereur rapidly wanders off onto weird non-sequiturs about the Mongols and Hitler. Why?|
|Some monarchs (kings or queens) avoided or delayed revolutions by becoming “enlightened despots” to conform to the Enlightenment ideas of good government. These rulers attempted or pretended to put the well-being of the people and the state ahead of the monarchs’ own preferences. Examples were Catherine the Great of Russia, Frederick II (the Great) of Prussia (the former name for Germany), and the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II of Austria. Often these reforms included some freedom of religion and speech, as allowed by Joseph II and Frederick the Great. Catherine the Great continued to modernize Russia as Peter the Great had done, but she also participated with Prussia and Austria in carving up Poland in the First, Second and Third Partitions (1772, 1793 and 1795) such that Poland did not exist again as a separate nation until after World War I. Catherine the Great also gave increased power to the Russian nobles over the serfs in order to appease the nobles.||Thanks for the definition of "monarch", Andy, nine lectures in. Did you get that from your beloved Mirriam-Webster dictionary? Prussia is not the old name for Germany. Prussia was an independent kingdom and, when "Germany" was formed in 1871, Prussia remained a semi-autonomous kingdom within the larger country. It's like saying that "Iowa" was an old name for the United States. Get it right, Andy.|
|Economically, there was another kind of revolution in the world in the late 1700s and early 1800s: the industrial revolution. Beginning in England, which had the most advanced economy, power-driven machinery enabled the use of factories to manufacture goods in large quantities. Marvelous new inventions, such as the steam engine and telegraph, began to change how people traveled and communicated. Pollution became a problem for the first time wherever there was a high concentration of factories.||It's been a while since Andy used the word "Marvelous". We are all so glad to see it back again, aren't we? Sigh. Note that Andy surprisingly criticises capitalist industrialisation for the levels of pollution it generates. Is Andy coming out as an environmentalist? Ooh!|
|Although Britain dominated the world in economically from 1776 to World War I, the United States began to grow in world influence in the early 1800s. But the Civil War (1861-65) set the United States back and it took decades for it to recover fully.||Christ, this section started in Jacobean England and now we're in Reconstructionist America, having taken a detour via Prussia, Russia, Poland, and some gloomy industrial city of the mid-nineteenth century. Andy's Attention Deficit Disorder is getting pretty bad. Well, let's hope that he can rekindle his muse in the next section. The English Civil War. Ohh, this is going to be fun...|
Religious Conflict in England
|In the 1600s, the major European countries adhered to the “divine right of kings,” such that the authority of a king came from God. But in England, unlike the countries in continental Europe, there was a constitutional monarchy that required the king to obey the law and share power with the Parliament. In all the other countries the king (or queen) simply did what he wanted.||Andy makes it sound as though we were the only country at the time to have a constitutional monarchy. In fact, England, the Netherlands, and Portugal - to a degree - had constitutional monarchies in which the political power of the king was limited by a semi-elected parliament. Note also that queens apparently have to use the masculine pronoun. Great work, Andy.|
|The sharing of power between the King of England and the Parliament caused continual conflict, some of it religious in nature. The religious disagreements between the Church of England, the Puritans, the Quakers and other Christian faiths caused many to flee to the new colonies in America to establish religious communities free from persecution in England. But note that many of these Christian denominations, such as the Puritans, did not believe in religious freedom for others any more than the Church of England did.||"the" Parliament? "Parliament" is a proper noun, and doesn't require the definite article. Andy paints a rather unflattering picture of Protestant groups, strangely.|
|After the founder of the Church of England (King Henry VIII) died in 1547, there were three noteworthy monarchs: Elizabeth I, James I and Charles I. Queen Elizabeth took the throne in 1558, about a decade after King Henry VIII, and remains the most popular English monarch in history. She ruled for nearly 45 years, until her death in 1603, and had two remarkable accomplishments: she deftly managed Parliament and many religious conflicts, and she crushed the massive Spanish Armada that attempted to invade England in 1588. A Protestant who was formally excommunicated by the Catholic Church, Elizabeth obtained the “Religious Settlement” from Parliament in 1559 that funded the Church of England and set many rules for it (like the ability of its clergy to marry) that remain to this day. Queen Elizabeth’s successful rule is known as the “Elizabethan Age.”||As Andy doesn't give either a geographical location or a cutoff date, it appears that there have only been three significant monarchs from 1547 to the present date. He neglects to mention Henry VII who became king as a child, Mary I who was married to Phillip of Spain, and of course Lady Jane Grey - a teenager who was Queen of the United Kingdom for a whole nine days. Pretty bad, but not as bad as poor old Louis XIX, who, on the afternoon of 2nd August 1830, was King of France for about twenty minutes. His brief reign consisted of listening to his wife nagging him, and trying to cheer up the previous king, who was crying in the corner. Nice. At least he managed to polish off a bottle of champagne during that time. Anyway, back to sixteenth-century England. Andy manages to portray Elizabeth I as some sort of gargantuan behemoth who crushed the entire Spanish Navy in one vast, pudgy claw. No mention of the fact that she never married, not even the entertaining snippet that she had ghastly skin problems due to excessive use of lead-based facepowder. She also had her sister executed, established England's first Secret Service, and was the protagonist in a merry little escapade which involved a famous explorer exiling himself for several years after accidentally farting in her presence. What happened to Andy's penchant for irrelevant factoids? He's missing some great ones here!|
|Queen Elizabeth never married and had no heirs. After her death in 1603, her cousin James Stuart, King James VI of Scotland, took the English throne as James I. The King James Version of the Bible, first published in 1611, was the magnificent English translation funded by his reign. This stunning work greatly influenced the development of the English language for centuries to come. But unlike Elizabeth, James I fought frequently with Parliament.||Oh, Andyd did mention it. Strange that he didn't see fit to mention that Virginia was subsequently named for this Virgin Queen (although her virginity probably went the way of the dodo long before she became Queen). Andy doesn't lose a point for harping on about the KJV, as he is at least not one of these weird KJV-Only fanatics like Jack Chick or Kent Hovind. However, he does fail to mention that the KJV was deliberately written in a language that was already archaic at the time, in order to make it seem more authentic. It would be like publishing a new Bible in 2011 that was written in the style of Jane Austen. Oh alright then, let's knock an extra point off Andy's score for praising the KJV as a source of linguistic development, when this self-satsified moron has discarded the apparently perfect KJV in favour of his own pants-wettingly funny "Conservative Bible Project". Seriously, read it. All that laughter will give you a six-pack stomach in no time. But it might cause a hernia, too...|
|Charles I became king in 1625 and conflicts worsened between the king and Parliament. Charles I needed funding in 1628, but Parliament refused unless Charles signed the Petition of Right. This important document would have limited the powers of the king in four significant ways. The king could no longer imprison people without good reason, or force people to house soldiers in their private homes, or impose taxes without the consent of Parliament, or impose martial (military) law during peacetime. The king’s power would be greatly weakened by this Petition, and Charles refused to sign it.||Aww, Andy. No mention of the fact that Charles I' monetary demands in 1628 were a new tax? The Ship Tax. Really, what happened to Andy's foaming-at-the-mouth hatred of taxes? Oh right, he's on the side of the divinely-appointed monarch. Bloody royalists. Look at him, bitching about restrictions to the military. "Boo-hoo! When will people realise that an unrestrained military budget, and limitless power handed over to military forces, is good for them? We'd all be so much better off under unfettered militarism!" Ass.|
|Charles also refused to give religious freedom to Puritans in England and Presbyterians in Scotland. This led to the religious English Civil War from 1642 to 1649, whereupon the Puritan leader Oliver Cromwell emerged victorious. King Charles was then tried and publicly executed. This was the first execution of a king by his own people in history, setting an example that future revolutions imitated.||So this is Andy's version of the English Civil War. It gets one sentence, and he hasn't even got the dates right. The King was executed in 1649, but the war against his supporters went on until 1651 - as did the English genocide of the Irish. He even has the causes all wrong, insisting that the war was fought over religion. It wasn't, Andy. The war was fought over political issues, specifically between those who supported the political authority of the King (the Royalists, or "Cavaliers") and those who supported the political authority of Parliament (the Parliamentarians, or "Roundheads"). These two sides were roughly, roughly, divided into Catholics/rural populations for the King, and Protestants/urban populations for Parliament. But this is extremely inadequate, as Catholics and Anglicans, and town and countryside dwellers, fought on both sides. There is no mention of what started the war - Parliament's refusal to reveal to the King the location of anti-royalist Members of the House of Commons, thus asserting for the first time the right of Parliament to make decisions without the approval of the monarch. There is no mention of the role of the Scots, the Welsh, and the Irish in the war, who fought for both sides in equal numbers. No mention of Parliament's control of the English Navy, which allowed a naval blockade of Royalist towns. ANdy doesn't even mention a single battle, such as Naseby or the Siege of Oxford, doesn't mention how Parliament made use of the first army drilled, trained, and organised along modern lines - the New Model Army. He doesn't even mention who tried the King, on what charges, or how he was executed. Considering - as Andy actually points out - that the English Civil War was a monumental moment in the evolution of modern democracy, and that it was a savagely bloody conflict even by seventeenth-century standards, his version is utterly pathetic. Even by his standards, this is just awful.|
|An example of the harsh religious conflict in England under Charles I was the experience of the Puritan William Prynne (1600-69). He wrote and distributed pamphlets, including his famous pamphlet Histrio Mastix (1632) that attacked stage-plays liked by Queen Henrietta Maria. Prynne’s writings caused him to be tried before the monarch’s Star Chamber and, of course, he was convicted in that unfair tribunal. His sentence in 1634 was the extremely harsh life imprisonment and the cropping of his ears (removal of part of his ears to disfigure him). But he continued to write pamphlets and thus in 1637 he was further punished by removing the remainder of his ears. In 1640, the Long Parliament limited the absolute power of the monarch and freed Prynne, and he was even elected to Parliament himself in 1648. But in December 1648 the English army (led by the Puritan Colonel Thomas Pride) led a coup that excluded more than 100 members of Parliament who sought to settle with Charles I, including the Puritan Prynne, from the House of Commons. That was known as “Pride’s Purge.” A “rump” Parliament then assembled without these excluded members, and allowed the execution of Charles I. It is easy to see why some Puritans decided to come to America during this time rather than stay in England.||Fantastic. A single example which is so piss-poor as to be pointless. Andy doesn't mention what the Star Chamber was - the old highest court of England, run like a secret policeman's pet project until its dismemberment by Parliament. He pogo-sticks around from the antebellum to postbellum period, with stop-offs during the war itself, for no apparent reason. Finally, a stupid little comment about America being superior to contemporary England, while forgetting that there was political conflict in England's American colonies at that time. Utterly ridiculous, Andy.|
|After defeating Charles I, Oliver Cromwell initially founded the “Commonwealth” (1649-53), which was a republican form of government. But like other future revolutionaries, Cromwell then decided simply to rule as a military dictator, which he did until his death in 1658. Most revolutions simply replace one form of dictatorship with another. The shining exception was the American Revolution, as its leader (George Washington) voluntarily gave up his power for the good of the people.||Yes, yes, Andy. The United States of America is the only good nation in the world, and George Washington's revolution was truly the work of a saint. The rest of us toil our lives away in blind service to ghastly, un-godly oppressive autocracies while you smug, white, rich, Republican twats sneer down from your marble tower at the peasants in the mud. Pillock. Let's forget, for the moment, that until voting reforms in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the American Revolution in fact merely transferred political power from a gaggle of rich, white, upper-class British males to a gaggle of rich, white, upper-class American males and completely ignored the oppressed Native Americans, the enslaved blacks, the subordinated women, and the unheeded working- and middle-class white males - don't forget that the majority of American men couldn't vote until 1868, American women were only allowed to vote in 1920, and African Americans couldn't vote until barely fifty years ago (yeah, Andy, what a "shining example" your country's voting rights record is). Instead, we'll keep the focus on Cromwell. Oliver Cromwell is one of those awkward figures whom history has painted as a noble crusader, whitewashigng the ugly aspects of his rule. The death toll in Ireland from Cromwell's conquest was horrifically high, and the religious and political oppression of British groups under The Protectorate (our brief flirtation with a "United Republic of Great Britain") was in many ways worse than it had been under the monarchy. It didn't help that as a Puritan, Cromwell was so boring and severe that he banned the manufacture of wallpaper and soft furnishings, had beautiful medieval Catholic murals painted over, outlawed parties, and made Christmas illegal. When he died, the British people couldn't invite a monarch back to the throne quickly enough. Andy could have had a field day with such factoids, had he bothered to pull his head of his arse and do some bloody research.|
|To this day Cromwell is loved by many in England, but hated by others. The Irish, which suffered from his brutality in Ireland, vilify Cromwell. Royalists, or those who love the English monarchy, also hated Cromwell and even dug up his corpse to behead him once the monarchy regained power. The anger against Cromwell was so great that his severed head was displayed outside Westminster Abbey for over 20 years, from 1661 to 1685, and the remainder of his corpse thrown into a disgraceful pit.||What?? We don't like Cromwell!! We hate the man!! He was intolerant, arrogant, and boring as hell. The only people here who like Oliver Cromwell are plummy-voiced bastards in posh West London mansions, who have been spoon-fed a Victorian version of history through their pretentious private schools, and whose only interaction with the real world is to sneer at the people who come to do the cleaning. The rest of us - thanks to historical revisionism through the syllabus of a state education - see Cromwell for what he was: a power-hungry maniac prepared to slaughter any and all who stood in the way of his vision of a perfect Christofascist dictatorship. Note Andy's tacit defence of the man by whingeing about the "disgraceful pit" in which people threw the tosser's body. Well, we all knew that Andy creams his jeans at the thought of a pseudo-Christian dictatorship...|
|After Cromwell’s death, the older son of Charles I took the throne as Charles II and instituted the Restoration (of the monarchy) in 1659. He ruled until his death in 1685, during which he established the rights of prisoners not to be held unless there was a good reason. This was the Habeas Corpus Act, passed in 1679, which became a basic right under the U.S. Constitution, Article One, Section Nine (“The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it.”). Also during the reign of Charles II the first political parties developed, known as the Whigs (liberals) and Tories (conservatives). Today those same political parties exist in England, although the Whigs are now the Labour Party (the English spelling of “labor”, which represents common or union workers).||Andy, strangely, doesn't give the name of Charles II until the end of the paragraph. Does he expect his homeschoolers to have psychic powers? Alright, most of them are inbred weirdos. But not so inbred as to develop extra-sensory perception. Points off for babbling about the US Constitution when he is meant to be discussing the Merry Monarch. Oh yes, Charles II was supremely popular. After the dull, dour, intolerant Fundafascist dictatorship of Oliver Cromwell, Charles II made the British people very, very happy by bringing back parties, banquets, theatres, shiny frivolous consumer goods, and Christmas. More points off for claiming that political parties developed. There were indeed divisions within Parliament, but these were matters of opinion or philosophy. The modern notion of political parties did not appear anywhere in the world until the mid-nineteenth century, when the Liberals (1859) and Conservatives (1868) formed organised, funded, hierarchical institutions to govern and garner votes. Even more points off for buggering up our tripartite party system (and for mentioning twenty-first century British politics in a section on the seventeenth century). The Whigs did not become the Labour Party. They are completely different, as evidenced by the fact that Labour is currently in opposition while the LibDems are in a governing coalition with the Conservative Party (doesn't Andy keep up with other right-wing morons around the world?). The Whigs formed themselves as the Liberal Party in 1859, and became the Liberal Democrat Party in 1988. The Labour Party was formed in 1900 as a completely separate entity to represent the urban working classes, rather than the well-meaning middle classes who had traditionally dominated the Liberal Party. Honestly, Andy. Read a fucking book.|
|James II, a Catholic, was the second son of Charles I and succeeded Charles II to the throne. The Catholic-Anglican conflict had been ongoing for over a hundred years, and many Protestants were unhappy about having a Catholic rule the country. Even now in England there is a law prohibiting a Catholic from serving in a top position. In 1688, the Protestants in Parliament asked Mary, the Protestant daughter of James II, to rule England (and Scotland) along with her Protestant husband William of Orange. James II was forced to flee to France, where he died in exile in 1701.||Andy makes it sound as though there was an actual war going on between Catholics and Anglicans. There wasn't - except sporadic violence between native Irish and the English colonists. Andy completely buggers up our laws against Catholic monarchs. It is true that throughout the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries there were laws prohibiting Catholics from serving in top jobs, but that is long-dead. The Catholic Relief Act of 1829 completely removed these barriers. We're not a nation of bloody bigots, Andy. Maybe if the man stopped patting himself on the back for having been born in the United States and actually took a moment to look at the world beyond the US border, he would see that we are not a bunch of savage, heathen barbarians.|
|This transfer in power in early 1689 became known as the “Glorious Revolution,” or the bloodless revolt. But while the ouster of James II itself was bloodless, it was incited in part by the execution of 300 persons (and sale into slavery of another 800) who participated in the 1685 revolt against James II known as (Duke) Monmouth’s Rebellion.||It was 1688, not 1689 - as Andy actually mentioned earlier.|
|William and Mary were the only “joint sovereigns” in British history such that each had equal power, because usually the spouse of a monarch has no power and serves merely as a “consort”. The College of William and Mary in Virginia, founded by this king and queen in 1693, is the second oldest college in America. Mary died in 1694, and William then ruled alone until 1702, when he died.||Why do we care about some random Virginian college? Isn't Andy supposed to be discussing the evolution (sorry, "Creation") of democracy?|
|William and Mary agreed in 1689 to a new Bill of Rights proposed by Parliament, which prevented a monarch from:
||Andy mentions only four of the ten clauses of the 1689 Bill of Rights, and neglects to mention such gems as the prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment, and the right of the people to possess weapons. Perhaps if he'd actually bothered to spend more than thirty seconds researching this, he could have trotted out these exemplars of how Britain started out as a good Conservapedian country before succumbing to the slavering hordes of abortionist communist atheists. But this is what happens when you don't do your research, Andy. Not only do you bugger it up, you miss great opportunities to cram conservative crap down the throats of your gullible, misled students.|
Age of Revolution
|The Age of Revolution is a general time period when revolutions swept the world to overthrow kings (monarchies) and establish constitutional forms of government. Some historians, focusing on the major revolutions that overthrew monarchies, consider the late 1700s to be the Age of Revolution, including the American (1776-1783) and French Revolutions (1789) and its subsequent Reign of Terror (1793-94). Other historians, seeing continued occurrence of revolutions worldwide after 1800, describe the period as being from 1776 to 1848, a year in which there were many unsuccessful revolutions and Karl Marx wrote the inspiration for future revolutions, The Communist Manifesto.||At first glance, it appears that Andy has actually read some real history books. The famous historian Eric Hobsbawm wrote a series of books which famously divided recent history into "Ages" - the Age of Industry, the Age of Revolution, the Age of Empire, etc. Of course, as this would necessitate picking up one of those scary papery things with their blasphemous, heretical versions of non-Conservapedian lore, we can be pretty sure that Andy has no idea such books exist.|
|A “revolution” is itself a controversial idea, and has little or no basis in Christianity. The ancient Greeks were entirely opposed to the idea of a revolution, and thought it occurred only when the morality and religious values of a society had decayed. In the Middle Ages, revolution was unknown and armed revolt against one’s society was unacceptable. Religious authority was strong and social order was desired. Armed revolt by Christians against their government leaders did not occur in ancient Rome, when the emperors were as cruel as possible, and such revolts remained rare or non-existent for over 1600 years.||This is a really, really strange paragraph. Firstly, Andy declares by fiat that revolution is anti-Christian - therefore all revolutions are offences against God, therefore the American Revolution was a heinous sin and George Washington is burning in Hell, soon to be joined by Andrew Schlafly for praising an event which contradicted the Bible. Then, in order to prove that revolution is anti-Christian, Andy cites the very non-Christian Ancient Greeks. Why?? He gets the medieval segment hopelessly wrong; as he himself wrote in Lectures Five and Six, there were numerous peasants' revolts and religious uprisings throughout the High and Late Middle Ages. As for his claim that there were no revolutions, rebellions, or uprisings between Ancient Rome and the late eighteenth century: he's wrong. SO wrong. For Christ's sake, the An Lushan Rebellion of 755-763 AD in China, claimed casualties of 36 million people - nearly a sixth of the entire human population. This man is so wrong there's not even any joy in making fun of his errors. Instead, his idiocy is to be pitied.|
|Historians credit Machiavelli as being the first thinker to lay the intellectual foundation for revolutions, though he never used the term. His work did indicate the need for change in the structure of government, and he expressed concern with maintaining stability. The English poet and writer John Milton (1608-74) was the first to express the desirability of revolution to overthrow a tyrant or abusive dictator, and thereby achieve freedom for the people. Milton’s view differed from Englishman Thomas Hobbes, who wrote in the Leviathan (1651) that people were inherently greedy and cruel, and that we needed an absolute monarchy to restrain our worst desires.||Machiavelli did not encourage revolution. In The Prince, Machiavelli does nothing but lay out a satirical set of guidelines for how a monarch should govern his people most effectively. Indeed, one of his snippets of advice is that during war, the monarch should never, ever give his citizens weapons - because they are more likely to revolt against him, than fight the enemy. Points off there, Andrew. As Andy can't even provide the title of one of Milton's works (and this is the Milton who was a poet, not a political thinker), we can only assume he is making this up. He finally buggers up Hobbes' Leviathan (named after the mythical Biblical creature which spouts fire, and which Kewnt Hovind claims was a dinosaur. Andy ought to know this!). In Leviathan, Hobbes famously declares that the natural state of humanity is one of anarchy and chaos, in which "life is nasty, brutish, and short". In order to curtail this, he claims, humans organised themselves into societies ruled by governments, in which people surrender some of their freedom to the State in exchange for the State providing protection against the dire natural state of humans - a form of Social Contract. Kudos for completely misunderstanding Hobbes, young Master Schlafly. We should beat you with Leviathan. It's a big book, and will leave some lovely bruises to remind you to bloody well read books before you attempt to describe their contents.|
|The German philosopher Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) later wrote that revolution was a “natural” step towards mankind reaching a higher ethical value system. The American and French Revolutions drew upon Kant’s ideas.||Praising Kant and the American Revolution, Andy? But you just told us that revolution is anti-Christian! Whose side are you on?|
|Subsequently another German philosopher, G.W.F. Hegel (1770-1831), insisted that revolutions were essential to human destiny, and that revolutionary leaders were heroes in promoting reform. Karl Marx, the most influential supporter of revolutions in world history, then drew upon Hegel’s ideas in order to promote future communist revolutions.||As Marx is sure to crop up again, we'll save the discussion of him for later. Suffice it to say that neither Hegel nor Marx gave explicit support for revolution. They were not writing normatively (ie: what society should be like), but descriptively (ie: what society is like). This is a common misconception, but one which Andy really should know, if he's claiming to be a history teacher. For both Hegel and Marx, revolution was inevitable and they were simply writing the reasons why it would happen, rather than writing blueprints for a formenting rebellion.|
|Revolutions continue even to this day. The most famous revolution in recent history was the Islamic Shiite revolution that overthrew the Shah of Iran and took control of that country in 1979, and holding American diplomats hostage for about a year.||Obviously Andy wrote this before the "Arab Spring" of 2011, in which popular uprisings in Islamic states overthrew the governments of Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya, while revolutions are still ongoing in Yeme, Oman, Jordan, and Syria, and a civil war in Libya. It'd be curious to see whether Conservapedia has anything to say about this year's unexpected wave of revolutions in Islam. Anyway, points off for irrelevantly mentioning the Iranian Hostage Crisis in a segment about the Enlightenment.|
|The American Revolution, beginning with the Declaration of Independence in 1776, was led by a small minority of colonists. Amazingly, there were just as many Loyalists (pro-British) as Patriots (pro-revolutionaries). Like the French Revolution discussed below, the American Revolution was instigated by an educated middle class. The ideas in the Declaration of Independence, drafted by 33-year-old Thomas Jefferson with help by other Founders, were very powerful. Invoking the authority of God frequently throughout the document, the Declaration contains the most striking legal statement of all time: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” The phrase “that all men are created equal” was original to the Declaration of Independence and was quoted frequently by Abraham Lincoln (e.g., in the Gettysburg Address) and by other future Americans.||We can only assume, sadly, that the history of the American Revolution is intellectually tortured in Conservapedia's "American History Lectures", stretched out to a hideous length on the rack of one of Andy the Inquisitor's god-awful diatribes until it says whatever he wants it to say. Mercifully, the revolution is only lightly interrogated here - but it still suffers painfully. We don't give a rat's ass how old Thomas Jefferson was in 1776, and neither should Andy, as he wasn't a homeschooled teenager by that age. As for "invoking the authority of God", Andy should go and read some other official documents from the newborn United States. The 1797 Treaty of Tripoli is a great one. Go on, Andy. See how much your precious Founding Fathers cared about Christianity when they wrote that. And as for "all men are created equal", anyone with even a smattering of education knows that that is utter bollocks. How many of the Founding Fathers owned black slaves? How many of them felt happy when they read of the latest massacre of Native Americans? And how many of them wanted women to remain subservient, cringeing creatures? To say nothing, of course, of bourgeois oppression of the working classes of ordinary white males - as impoverished, brutalised, and unfree, in their own way, as any woman, black man, or Native American. Pretty words don't disguise the fact that late-eighteenth century America was every bit as racist, bigoted, and exclusionary as any European state. And considering that tens of millions of modern Americans throw a shitstorm any time they hear the words "immigrant", "Arab", or "homosexual", it appears that the people of the United States in general and Republican in particular, still have a long, long way to go before they truly consider all men to be created equal.|
|The Declaration of Independence drew upon Christianity and the Enlightenment English philosopher John Locke. In his famous work “Two Treatises on Government” (1690), Locke declared that all men have the natural (inalienable) rights of “life, liberty and estate (property).” Adam Smith, the great economist, modified this to be “life, liberty and the pursuit of property.” Notably the Declaration of Independence does not emphasize a right to pursue property, however, speaking instead in favor of pursuit of “happiness”.||
So, the Declaration of Independence does not emphasise private property? Then why do Republicans get so pissy about property rights? Oh, and Andy - if the Declaration grants all Americans the right to pursue happiness, why do you foam at the mouth at the thought of two men getting married? Oh right, you're a bigoted, double-standard arsewipe. Hey, at least the man was able to mention the Declaration of Independence without bringing up the Second Amendment and gun rights. Cue Homer and Lisa Simpson:
Lisa: Dad, the Second Amendment is just a relic from colonial days. It has no meaning now!
Homer: You couldn't be more wrong, Lisa. Without a gun to protect you, the King of England could just walk in here right now, and start shoving you around. Do you want that? (Shoves her). Huh? Do you?
Lisa: (Rolls eyes) No.Homer. Damn right!
|Locke also wrote that government exists to defend our natural rights, and when government fails to do so then it may rightfully be overthrown. Locke built on the concept of a “social contract” first proposed by Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), who felt that government was a contract by which people gave up some rights to government to obtain protection and order in return. When this social contract is violated by government, as when it fails to defend our natural rights, then Locke felt that rejecting the authority of government was justified. This logic was embraced by the Declaration of Independence by declaring that the colonies were right to break away from the King of England because he failed to uphold the social contract. The Declaration said: “That to
secure these [inalienable] rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving theirjust powers from the consent of the governed,—That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government ….” And the Patriots did “abolish” English rule here.
|Hmm. So if people had decided that Dubya's government, with its tax breaks for the rich, its illegal wars, its scaling-back of public services, and its partial suspension of civil liberties, was not upholding its end of the Social Contract, would it have been acceptable in Andy's eyes to revolt? Bear this in mind for when Obama inebvitably loses an election to the new wave of fat, rich, right-wing twats descending like a plague upon Washington. Andy Schlafly has just given justification for an uprising! Hooray! Time to sing "The Internationale". All together, now...|
|The French Revolution is the most famous in all of world history. It started out with the hope and promise of the American Revolution, but ended up with nearly everyone being executed by the guillotine. There was a “Reign of Terror” which was exactly what it name implies: terrifying chaos when anyone and everyone could be killed at any time.||
What does the "B" stand for? Bonapartist? Blessed? Bibul-hatin'? Andy starts out, predictably, with a gripe about the French and an unflattering comparison to the USA. Typical. He mashes the Reign of Terror - as this will be discussed later, we shall confine ourselves here to saying that he is, unsurprisingly, twisting the truth in order to do a bit of obligatory right-wing scaremongering.Glancing ahead, this is a remarkably long section. A quick reconnaissance sweep tells us why - Andy is going to misrepresent, twist, and lie outright in order to demonise the French Revolution. This is going to be painful. You may want to pause and pour yourself a stiff drink. Something appropriately French - maybe a nice mellow Burgundy, or a cheeky young Chardonnay. Take the whole bottle, you'll need it. Right, let's do this! Pick up your muskets, hunch your shoulders, and let's muscle our way through the tightly-packed ranks of right-wing bullshit in order to rescue Truth before it is mercilessly guillotined for the satisfaction of the baying Conservapedian mob...
|In its Old Regime prior to the revolution, France had three tiers or levels in its social system: the First, Second and Third Estates. The First Estate was only 1% of the population but it controlled 10% of the land. This was the clergy and they paid no taxes. To be fair, however, much of this land was church land made available to the public, and clergy do not pay any taxes today in the United States either.The Second Estate was only about 2% of the population but they controlled 20% of the land. This was the landed nobility, and they paid very little in taxes. The Third Estate was everyone else: the peasants, the merchants and the laborers, and they were badly overtaxed by the monarch, King Louis XVI. Recall that taxes were a major cause of the American Revolution also.||
Great. We've only just penetrated the outer fringes of the crowd, and we're already being buffeted by a swirling mob of Schlafly Statistics.The Three-Estate system in France was a hangover of the Middle Ages, composed of those who fight (the nobles), those who pray (the clergy), and those who work (everyone else). It had fizzled away in other European states during the Early Modern Period, but due to the Absolutist nature of France, had remained lingering in the background as a way of governing the country. The First Estate, France's nobility, was far larger than its counterparts in other countries. France and England, for example, had roughly the same populations in 1789, but France had four times as many nobles as England. The French aristocracy owned a disproportionate amount of land, and bought their way into cushy government jobs in order to draw government salaries, without any intention of actually doing any work. They also paid no taxes, despite their wealth. "To be fair", Andy, the Second Estate, or clergy, were a mixed bag consisting of hardworking, underpaid parish priests who cared for the sick, the infirm, and orphans out of their own paltry wages; an awful lot of decadent monasteries which did very little for the people; and a class of arrogant, uncaring, disgustingly rich bishops who drank and whored their days away in Parisian brothels, paid for by heavy tithes extracted from the Third Estate. The poor old Third Estate were, as Andy gets right, a very diverse group. But what united them was the fact that they all had to pay high taxes, and had practically no representation in government. This was not a good situation for poor King Louis. Note that Andy exhorts us to remember the role of taxes in the American Revolution, even though he didn't actually mention that factor in the previous segment. Sigh...
|The leaders of the Third Estate were the middle class, also known as the bourgeoisie. They did better than the peasants and worked as merchants or skilled artisans. They were educated and trained in many of the ideas of the Enlightenment, most notably Jean Jacques Rousseau. His work “The Social Contract” (1762) supported a direct democracy rather than the republican form of government adopted in America. The “social contract” was a contract among free people to create government. Rousseau disapproved of titles like nobility, and demanded complete equality between all people.||How many times is this man going to witter on about the Social Contract? It now appears every few paragraphs, and is always a half-arsed job. Stop embarrassing yourself, Monsieur Schlafly d'Illinois.|
|France was near bankruptcy in 1789 due to King Louis XVI’s extravagance and high taxes, which discouraged work. The Second Estate then made a big mistake in demanding a meeting of the Estates-General, which was a French Assembly that had not met in 175 years. The defect in this strategy was that each Estate had one vote in the Assembly, such that the First and Second Estates could always outvote the Third Estate. That was acceptable in the early 1600s, but the Third Estate would not allow this in 1789 after learning the Enlightenment ideas. They wanted a system of one vote per delegate, which would have given the Third Estate the same number of votes as the First and Second Estate combined.||
France by 1789 was indeed in a dreadful financial mess. A combination of the cost of recent wars (including France's contribution to the American Revolution), a bloated military budget, a worsening import/export deficit, and France's hopelessly mismanaged tax system, meant that bankruptcy was looming. To try and solve this, Louis appointed the Swiss economist Jacques Necker as Minister of Finance, charged with balancing the budget. However, Necker quickly became unpopular at court because he repeatedly hammered home the point that if France was to get out of its financial woes, the nobility and clergy had to start paying taxes. Led by Queen Marie-Antoinette, who hated Necker, the rich bastards blocked his every proposal and in early 1789, Necker resigned in disgust. This left Louis with the only option open to him - debate the financial crisis in the Estates-General.A form of French parliament, the Estates-General had not been convened since the last financial crisis in 1614, and when it opened on 5th May 1789, it still followed the rules of 1614. The nobles and top clergy were allowed to represent themselves, but the Third Estate had to make do with electing delegates to represent towns and communities. These delegates weren't even allowed to sit with the nobles and clergy, and weren't allowed to speak until the first two estates had reached a decision. The proceedings rapidly bogged down in technicalities and deadlocks, and the delegates for the Third Estate became increasingly frustrated. Indeed, the Estates-General spent more time arguing over what to wear, how to address one another, and how to arrange the seating, than discussing the looming financial crisis. But these men weren't the obedient Third Estate of 1614, cringeingly obeying the blue-bloods in the hope of gaining favour - these were educated men well-versed in Enlightenment ideals. Meeting on their own, they started to ignore tax reform in favour of discussing reform of the whole government system. This was an ominous sign, made even worse when, on 16th June 1789, they declared themselves the National Assembly and representatives of the whole of France. Invitations were sent out to the First and Second Estates to join them - most nobles and clery flatly refused but a few clever ones, seeing which way the wind was blowing, began crossing the floor to go and sit with the Third Estate delegates. This was a very bad sign for the King, especially when on one particularly bitchy afternoon, his own brother, the Duke of Orleans, made a big show of taking off his fancy First-Estate official cloak, picking up a plain stool, and walking across the floor to sit among the clapping commoners. Not a good omen. However, the National Assembly was still loyal to the King - all they wanted was more say in government and a reform of taxes.
|When the First and Second Estates refused this request by the Third Estate, it left and formed a new National Assembly. When the Third Estate was locked out of its meeting place, it met on tennis court and took the “Tennis Court Oath” to draft a new French constitution.||Indeed, Andy! The new National Assembly tried to present its demands, but were locked out of the meeting-hall. They indeed met at the nearby Royal Tennis Court, and there, representatives of all three Estates drew up a Constitution. Most of the clergy now joined them, along with a few more nobles. The King tried to reconcile the three Estates but nobody paid any attention. When the King addressed the new Assembly and the remnants of the Estates-General on 23rd June, ordering them to disperse, nobody moved. For security, the King began moving troops into Versailles and Paris - a move which only exacerbated the hostility between the three Estates and strengthened the unity of the National Assembly.|
|Violence soon hit the streets. On July 14, 1789 (“Bastille Day”), French peasants stormed the large Paris prison known as Bastille, freeing the inmates. The Great Fear or panic resulted, as riots occurred and peasants proceeded to burn wealthy homes. Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette, were forced from their home in Versailles by a riot of women over the high price of bread. Supposedly the snobby Antoinette responded unsympathetically to the lack of bread for the peasants by declaring, “Let them eat cake!” Historians doubt she ever actually said that.||
Andy, predictably, scores a hat-trick by blaming the plebs and getting it wrong. The violence of early July was in large part exacerbated by the King moving troops into the Paris and Versailles region, which angered the people. After all, the Estates had nominally agreed on a new Constitution and the King had ratified the National Assembly as the legitimate representative body of France; but here he was bringing in troops. And it didn't take a genius to guess that these troops were to be used to break up the new Assembly - although Louis, ever-cautious, decided not to risk that. The events of Bastille Day have been greatly misrepresented in histry. This was not a bloody uprising, neither was it a noble strike for the ordinary man. It was an ad-hoc affair which was unplanned, and simple escalated into a riot on a hot day when tempers were already frayed. A mob attacked the hated Bastille - a Paris prison - and slaughtered the garrison, aided by mutinous soldiers who either supported the Assembly, or were angry at not having been paid in so long. It could all have ended there and then had the King remained calm, but he over-reacted by sending punitive military forces into Paris. This only made things worse.Andy misrepresents the Great Fear. Throughout late 1789, there were tensions mostly in Paris, which spilled over into sporadic, random violence in other towns. Other towns and counties in France began to adopt similar local governments to Paris, while sproadic violence encouraged the first wave of emigration by nobles. But the Great Fear was not a bloodbath. It was as it name suggests - fear of potential violence, not actual violence. Meanwhile France's finances continued to get worse and worse, as did the King's indecisiveness. Andy again buggers up the "March on Versailles" - the women did not force the royal family to flee. Rather, the King volunteered to temporarily move from Versailles (several miles outside Paris) to the Tuileries Palace in central Paris, so he could inspire confidence in the royal office. There was indeed some grisly violence, perpetrated by the sort of Rent-a-Mob professional thugs who attach themselves to any protest and do not represent the goals of that movement. In fact, when the King appeared on a balcony to address the crowds at Versailles, there were great cheers of "Vive le Roi!". Like so many revolutions, the early stages of the French Revolution were simply unplanned protests. Certainly not the vicious, scheming slaughter which Andy implies. Points off for declaring that Marie-Antoinette said one of Hollywood's favourite lines, then in the next breath telling us it never happened. Bravo. Needed to pad out your wordcount, Andy? Come on, you could have done better than that.
|By then the French Revolution was in full swing. The National Assembly approved the “Declaration of the Rights of Man,” which combined ideas of the American Declaration of Independence with some Enlightenment concepts. The result of this combination had many debatable claims. The entire document is short and worth reading in full: http://www.hrcr.org/docs/frenchdec.html||No, no, no. This is a common misconception, and it isn't surprising to see Andy fall into the trap. The French Revolution was not, like some later revolutions, a carefully-planned operation in which a trained core of hardline rebels followed some grand strategy, with specific objectives, tactics, and back-up plans. The events of 1789-1793 were ad hoc, unplanned, undisciplined, often unrelated phenomena which emerged from nowhere and more often than not, disappeared as quickly as they began. The storming of the Bastille was born of a lot of irritable, tipsy mobs hanging around the prison entrance. The Great Fear was born of mass paranoia in the wake of isolated violence. Don't forget that nobody at the time was quite sure who was in charge of France - the King, or the National Assembly, or the tattered remnants of the Estates-General - and so it was not possible to identify a specific opponent and develop a specific strategy. The French revolutionaries simply made it up as they went along, reacting to political stimuli, until the events of 1793 - a mass invasion of France by all the other European powers - necessitated a more organised approach. Andy is badly wrong in saying "the French Revolution was in full swing", as he makes it sound as though something was being orchestrated along the lines of a grand strategy. Simply not true.|
|Unlike the American declaration that “all men are created equal,” the French version declared that “Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be founded only upon the general good.” Unlike the American declaration that all men have inalienable rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” the French version declared that all men have natural rights of “liberty, property, security and resistance to oppression.” Some of the French declarations seem silly, like this one: “Every citizen may, accordingly, speak, write, and print with freedom, but shall be responsible for such abuses of this freedom as shall be defined by law.” What is the meaning of a freedom if it is arbitrarily limited by undefined “abuses of this freedom”?||Andy is a fan of this "they seemed silly" approach to non-American events. He used it to describe the economic reforms of Emperor Diocletian back in Lecture Four, and I'm pretty sure it cropped up again somewhere in between there and here. It's childish, it's condescending, and it shows a total lack of scholarly methods. It is not the place of historians to project their personal opinions onto the past, especially when dealing with documents created under specific contextual circumstances. Anyway, we don't have to delve quite so deeply into scholarly methodology to pick apart Andy's trite little claim here. He doesn't seem to understand that the two clauses he is comparing are the same. In America, people can't exercise their freedom unrestrained. Remember the social contract, Andy? People surrender some of their freedoms to the state, in return for the protection of the state. An American is not free, for example, to go on a killing spree, as the exercise of that freedom is an infringement of other peoples' right to live. Thus the state prohibits some freedoms in order to protect us from each others' unrestrained exercise of what we think our freedoms are. So Andy has failed at his own tiresome attempt at rhetoric. "What is the meaning of a freedom if it is arbitrarily limited", Andy? The answer is that this is a flawed question from the start, because every "freedom" that we enjoy as members of the group, is restrained by collective agreement of the group. Ergo est sum, Monsieur Schlafly.|
|In 1791, a French journalist named Olympe de Gouges proposed a “Declaration of the Rights of Woman,” but the National Assembly rejected her proposal. She, like many other leaders of that time, was eventually executed by guillotine.||Andy neglects to mention the Englishwoman Mary Woolstonecraft's publication of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman in 1792, too. Why? Perhaps he is simply unaware, as he couldn't be bothered to do any research. Or possibly, he just really, really, dislikes female empowerment. Or equally possible, is that Andy daren't mention just how popular the early stages of the French Revolution were outside of France. Particularly in England. He is so desperate to tar-and-feather the Revolution that he wilfully ignores the fact that among the intelligentsia of Europe from 1789-1792, support for the French Revolutionaries was extremely high. King Louis had a very bad press among foreign populations, and when the ordinary French people stood up to their oppressive, decadent, foppish overlords and defiantly said "Non!", the European elite applauded them. Pro-Revolutionary Societies cropped up in London, Vienna, St Petersburg, Berlin, and large cities across the continent. Even in New York and Philadelphia, Andy. It all started to go sour when the Revolution turned bloody in 1793, but until then, there was global support for the Revolutionaries. How predictable of Andy to completely ignore this.|
|The French National Assembly established a constitutional monarchy and, in 1791, adopted a new constitution that created a Legislative Assembly. Three factions quickly formed in the new Legislative Assembly, known as the radicals (liberals), moderates (centrists) and conservatives, similar to those political movements today in the United States. The three factions sat in different sections of the large assembly hall, with the radicals (liberals) sitting on the left, the moderates sitting in the center, and the conservatives sitting on the right. That gave rise to the left-center-right terminology that we still use today in the United States to describe these three political groups.||Oh for f**k's sake. "radicals (liberals)". No no NO. Does Andy actually understand what is meant by "liberal"? They are not slavering Commie-Nazis, you cretin. They are political moderates dedicated to progressive change, not violent upheaval. Liberals and Radicals generally don't have a lot of time for one another. The actual divisions in the semi-circular Assembly were not named - the Legislative Assembly only existed for a year, and was a total failure. It was vaguely divided as the extremist Jacobins sat on the left, the ancien regime moderates at the right, and everyone else somewhere in the middle - but was not divided into three neat categories with twenty-first century snarl words as monikers. Give it a rest, Andy.|
|Meanwhile, Prussia and Austria were at war with one another, and Prussia offered to help the French King Louis XVI and his royal family. In response, in August 1792, the French revolutionaries imprisoned the king and his family.||
What? No they weren't! The Austrians and Prussians were still trying to out-do one another in order to gain dominance over the (largely ignored) Holy Roman Empire, but they certainly weren't fighting each other! Andy then builds upon this lie by misrepresenting the French imprisonment of King Louis.After relocating from Versailles to Paris, the King seems to have entered a period of deep depression and he withdrew from public life, leaving political decisions to Queen Marie-Antoinette. While the French people were still fond of Louis (he was a good man who did seem to genuinely care about his people), Marie-Antoinette was foreign, extremely arrogant, couldn't give a damn about the French people, and was truly loathed by everyone outside her immediate circle. By the summer of 1791, the King's rights had been gradually worn down until he effectively had no political power left whatsoever. Marie-Antoinette, meanwhile, had been in correspondence with foreign royals and had hatched an escape plan. She convinced King Louis to join her and in the early hours of June 21st, the King and Queen fled Paris in a coach, bound for the border with Belgium and the fortress of Montmedy, where royalist troops were waiting for the King to launch a counter-revolution. They made good progress but when they arrived at the town of Varennes some 30 miles from their destination, a sharp-eyed sentry recognised the face of King Louis from a coin. The King and Queen were arrested and taken back to Paris. This was disastrous for their public image. Before the "Flight to Varennes", most French people had openly supported the King as a moderate who wanted to reform France. Afterwards, though, his image changed to that of a coward who had tried to run away, join up with foreign forces, and crush the Revolution with force. Partly to protect him from hostile crowds and partly to ensure he didn't try to do a runner again, the Legislative Assembly put Louis and the royal court under house arrest at the Tuileries Palace. This in turn infuriated foreign kings, particularly the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II, who was Marie-Antoinette's brother. France's overseas image started to turn sour, and it just went downhill from here. Thanks, Andy, for not bothering to tell your students any of this.
|A new National Convention replaced the Legislative Assembly and abolished the monarchy in order to establish a republic in 1792, which gave all adult males the right to vote. A radical political group called the Jacobins gained power, led by Georges Danton and Jean Paul Marat. Under the influence of the Jacobins, the National Convention used the guillotine to execute Louis XVI in January 1793. By this time many countries, including Great Britain, Spain, the Netherlands, Prussia and Austria, had formed a First Coalition to prevent the violence in France from spreading outside. The National Convention responded by drafting people into an army. Historians claim women were drafted, but such a politically inspired claim is worth investigating before accepting it.||
Again, chronic misrepresentation. Following the Varennes incident, Louis agitated the Legislative Assembly, prodding them towards war with Austria (the dominant member-state of the Holy Roman Empire) in the hope that France would be badly beaten, and in the chaos he could reclaim the throne and his pre-1789 powers. Austria and France indeed went to war in April 1792 and, fearing a pro-Austrian conspiracy by their own King and Queen, a mob stormed the Tuileries Palace on August 10th. The storming was savage in the extreme - many courtiers, servants, and all of the Swiss Guard were slaughtered and mutilated either in the palace, or dragged out into the street to be killed. On a side note, this was witnessed from a cafe across the street by a young Napoleon Bonaparte, who was very nearly killed when he tried to save an injured Swiss Guardsman from the mob. Louis, however, reacted with astonishing calm. He let the rioters put a Revolutionary cap on his head, sat down to drink a glass of wine with the leaders, and everyone went home calmly. Again, evidence that the Revolution was not carefully orchestrated but was haphazard and ad hoc with no clear objectives. The Legislative Assembly responded by removing the King's remaining political powers, and when cleaners in the palace conveniently discovered "evidence" that Louis had been in correspondence with the Austrians, the Assembly realised they had to remove Louis, for fear that he was conspiring with the enemy.
Stripped of his powers and even his title (now "Citizen Capet" rather than "His Majesty"), Louis was brought to trial by the latest government incarnation - the National Convention - indicted with treason, and guillotined on January 21st, 1793. By all accounts Louis was calm and brave right up to the end, even giving gifts of money to the soldiers who escorted him to the scaffold, and sharing some gallows humour with Charles Henri Sanson, the Paris public executioner. And so ended the French monarchy. Louis' young son had died of illness some months before, and several months later the hated Marie-Antoinette followed Louis to be kissed by Madame Guillotine, as the phrase of the day said.The repercussions of this regicide were phenomenal - as Andy vaguely gets right, the whole of Europe declared war on France. Simultaneously, popular foreign support for the Revolution, which had been waning as one feckless government after another bumbled along in Paris, evaporated. The foreign press began to portray the Revolutionaries as bloodthirsty scum. Apparently Andy is taking The Times of early 1793 as actual fact. His final bit about conscripting women is confusing and unnecessary. If he isn't sure, why does he include it? And why is it even important? The levée en masse, or citizens' army, of course included women. But the levée, which raised by far the largest army of the period, was made up of zealous volunteers - not conscripts - defending La France Sacreé against those who sought to crush the Revolution. A pointless and stupid factoid for Andy to toss in.
|The execution of Louis XVI led almost immediately to the Reign of Terror. Maximilian Robespierre, head of the Committee of Public Safety, proceeded to guillotine numerous alleged enemies, including Marie Antoinette. In a classic illustration of Jesus’s teaching that “he who lives by the sword dies by the sword,” Jacobin leaders Georges Danton (a fiery orator) was guillotined, and Jean-Paul Marat (a scientist) was stabbed to death in his bathtub. Eventually Robespierre himself was guillotined in 1794, and the Reign of Terror ended with his death.||Sometimes Andy is right, and here is one such occasion. Louis' execution did indeed unleash the Reign of Terror in Paris and the provinces, as royalists, foreigners, clergy, nobles, and anyone vaguely suspected of affiliation with the ancien regime or the foreign invaders, was taken to tribunal and inevitably executed. And not always by guillotine - in Lyons, royalists were put up against a wall and blasted apart with cannon-fire, while in the Girond, prisoners were tied up, put on barges towed out into the middle of the River Loire, and sunk. Civil war was inevitable, particularly in the western Vendée regions, which were highly royalist and highly Christian. Strange of Andy not to mention them, or indeed any of the civil war or foreign invasions. He fails to mention the Battle of Jemappes in November 1792, in which the levée en masse utterly routed a highly-disciplined Austrian army. He fails to mention Toulon in 1793, when a royalist coup caused the British to take over the city - until Napoleon Bonaparte thre them back out. He fails to mention the disaster as Quiberon Bay in 1795, when, in an early anticipation of D-Day (as Andy is such a fan of crap analogies), the British and royalist French launched an amphibious invasion of France - which was repulsed with terrible casualties for the Coalition forces. The civil war in France was appallingly bloody, and when it finally died down in 1797, the combined death toll from the ongoing foreign invasions, recently-ended civil wars, and long-ended Reign of Terror was close to a million. Most killed on the battlefields, starved, or executed without trial. But, predictably, instead of discussing this Andy opts for some shitty little analogy involving Christianity, gives us another grocery-list of characters whose role and importance in the Revolution he doesn't bother to explain.|
|At last the government of France was in the hands of a legislature, and an executive branch of five men called the Directory. The Directory picked a young, highly successful military genius named Napoleon to lead the French army. The very next day Napoleon seized all power in France as its dictator, in November 1799.||
Andy has suddenly leapt forward to the Directory, and completely buggers up Napoleon's coup d'etat. We were too late to save most of the historical record from being butchered in this section, but allons, mes camarades! Grab your muskets and we'll wade in to rescue General Bonaparte!
In 1798 the Directory was the latest manifestation of the French legislature and executive, and like its predecessors, was unpopular with the people. Understandably, the Directors feared a coup from the much more popular military - while the Directors sat bumbling around all day, the generals were winning victories for France, and the crowds loved that. The most likely threat was France's best general, Napoleon Bonaparte. Born into minor gentry in Corsica in 1769, the Italian Napoleone di Buounoparte attended military schools in France from the age of ten. He was an artillery officer of twenty years old - and fully assimilated into French culture - when the Estates-General was convened in 1789 (a bit too old and better-educated for Andy to adulate as a homeschooled teenager). After a brief and unsuccessful war fighting his own people as Corsica tried to secede from France, Napoleon was given command of the artillery at Toulon in 1793, fighting the British and royalists. Here, he was wounded in hand-to-hand combat with a British marine and after the recapture of the city, was promoted to Brigadier-General at the tender age of 24. Briefly incarcerated in Paris as a political suspect, Napoleon was again given command of the artillery in Paris during an attempted royalist counter-revolution. On 13 Vendemiarie (the French changed the calendar during the Revolution), Napoleon famously blasted the counter-revolution to bloody chunks with "a whiff of grapeshot". Having proven his political loyalty, Napoleon was given command of the Army of Italy and throughout late 1796 and early 1797, drove the Austrians out of northern Italy, establishing allied republics there. It really is remarkable that Andy didn't mention this - Napoleon was traditionalist, conservative, very brave, and a young man. A real Conservapedian hero! Although if Napoleon and Andy were ever to meet, it wouldn't be pretty. Napoleon hated reactionaries, and had a very quick temper. Anyway, the Directors got nervous about Napoleon's popularity and in early 1798, leapt at the chance to get rid of him when Napoleon presented plans to disrupt British trade by capturing Ottoman Egypt. His conquest of Egypt was rapid and successful, but a political disaster - his ships were destroyed by Admiral Nelson, leaving Napoleon stranded in Egypt, and in his absence the Austrians recaptured Italy. Napoleon abandoned his army and sneaked back to France on a fast ship arriving in Paris in October 1799. He arrived to find the French people furious at the bumbling, incompetent, bankrupt Directory. And here is where Andy's version of history completely loses any association with reality.
One of the five Directors, Joseph Sieyes, approached Bonaparte with the invitation to join him in a coup d'etat, to quickly and neatly replace the hated and ineffective Directory with a new government, before a popular uprising turned everything to chaos. Napoleon, encouraged by another Director, Roger Ducos, and his brother Lucien (who was President of the Senate), agreed. On 18 Brumaire Year VIII (9th November 1799), Napoleon spoke to the Senate, advising him that he and his troops were here to protect them. Fearing a military coup which would dissolve the Republic in favour of a military dictatorship or - God forbid - a return to the monarchy, the Senators tried to stab him. Napoleon was only saved by the timely intervention of some burly soldiers. Returing with more troops, he dispersed the Senate. Later that day, his brother Lucien convinced a quorum of Senators that they had a choice: approve a new government headed by Napoleon, or risk a second Revolution which would plunge France into chaos, right in the middle of a war against every nation on the continent. Fearful, the Senators approved the dissolution of the Directory and the creation of the Consulate - a new government composed of Bonaparte as First Consul, and Sieyes and Ducos as supporting executives. Napoleon, it must be said, was effectively a military dictator who could not be removed from office by legal means. This system remained until 1804, when in response to a variety of factors we will discuss later, Napoleon crowned himself Emperor.So, there we have it. This tiny little paragraph by Andy may appear insignificant, but in all of the lectures so far, it is this little, easily-overlooked snippet which reveals just how abominably shit Andy's lectures really are. And the imbecile peddles this to his students. That's not just wrong. It's not even negligent. It's criminal.
|The influence of the French Revolution was immense throughout the western hemisphere, as other peoples felt that they, too, could rise up against their rulers and defeat them. Historians credit the French Revolution with spreading the ideas of the Enlightenment, limiting the power of nobility and clergy, and ending an absolute monarchy. But many who supported the French Revolution in its beginning were horrified by where it led, including numerous executions and terror. Some would say that France never fully recovered, as the French Revolution unleashed an hostility towards Christianity that continues to this day in France. Islam has recently risen in power there.||For something which is as apparently important as the French Revolution (and important it certainly was), Andy really could have done better than this shit. A lot better. We'll ignore the stupid little scaremongering ending he has tacked on, and instead be grateful that we have done our job. Like loyal Guardsmen we have bravely muscled our way into the throngs of Conservapedian crap and rescued Historical Truth from the guillotine of Conservapedian "reality", simultaneously performing Scarlet Pimpernel-esque feats of derring-do to snatch snippets of Real History from the frenzied mobs of Fundafascist morons. That deserves a reward! Pour yourself another glass of that fine French wine, before we shoulder our methodological muskets and march off to defend our glorious Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte. All togther, now. Vive l'Empereur!!|
|Napoleon was smart, ambitious, and a tremendous leader. Quickly, by 1802, Napoleon had signed peace treaties with all his major enemies in the Second Coalition against France, including Great Britain, Russia and Austria. He then improved France immensely with reformed taxation, improved finance through use of a national bank, a successful system of laws known as the Napoleonic Code, and even a public school system. But all was not for the better. Napoleon repealed a ban on slavery in the French Caribbean, restricted freedom of speech and the press, and did not allow women to have the same property rights as men.||
Napoleon was smart, ambitious, and tremendous - but apparently not enough to warrant a discussion of who he was, where he came from, or even a vaguely accurate account of his role in the late French Republic. Having become First Consul in November 1799, Napoleon indeed pursued peace - the Allies and Bonaparte all wanted peace. Britain had spent enormous sums of money to bankroll her allies, the Austrians, Prussians, and Russians had all suffered battlefield defeats, and Napoleon himself wanted peace to rebuild France from the excesses of the Revolution. The Treaty of Luneville in 1802 gave him peace with the Holy Roman Empire and Russia, while the Treaty of Amiens a few weeks later gave peace with Britain. It didn't last long, though, and by 1804 everyone was at each other's throats again. This was largely precipitated by Napoleon's anger that Britain had not honoured some of the terms of the peace treaty, and Britain's anger at France's attempt to regain colonies in the Caribbean - along with hostility on both sides as rumours spread of an impending French invasion of Britain. Britain cajoled Austria into resuming the war, and Napoleon postponed his planned invasion of Britain to crush Austria.Throughout his tenure as First Consul and (after 1804) Emperor of the French, Napoleon did indeed improve France's civilian infrastructure. He built roads and canals, subsidised agriculture and industry, reformed taxes and the judiciary, opened schools and re-opened the churches, and reformed the law. Andy is remarkably starry-eyed about all of this state involvement. What happened to Conservapedian hatred of Big Government? As Andy gets right (for once), Napoleon did indeed re-institute slavery and sent a fleet and army to subdue Haiti, where the slaves had risen up in rebellion. However the expedition was a total disaster as most of the troops died of yellow fever, and French meddling in the Caribbean tipped Britain into resuming the war. Like so many powerful men, Napoleon started off with good intentions but then wandered off into despotism. No wonder Andy likes him.
|Napoleon needed cash to fight a new Third Coalition against him, and also to pay for a failed attempt to quell a rebellion against France in the Caribbean Saint Dominigue (Haiti). Napoleon sold the massive territory of Louisiana, which had already implemented the Napoleonic Code and where it is still used to this day in the State of Louisiana, to the United States for a few million dollars in 1803. Then, in 1804, Napoleon declared himself emperor of France and proceeded to conquer or acquire as much territory in Europe as possible. He did very well until he failed to conquer Great Britain, which had a superior navy that defeated Napoleon’s fleet at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. English Admiral Horatio Nelson was the hero of that battle.||
No mention of the campaigns against Austria, which culminated in 1805 with the French capture of Vienna and the destruction of the Austrian army at Austerlitz. No mention of the Prussian defeat at Jena in 1806, and Napoleon's march on Berlin. No mention of how, in 1806, the Holy Roman Emperor quietly dissolved the thousand-year-old Holy Roman Empire, to be replaced by fully independent states, many loyal to Napoleon. No mention of Napoleon's reorganisation of the Italian and Croatian principalities, nor his relations with the Ottoman and Swedish Empires, nor his tentative treaties with the United States. No mention of his victory over the Russians at Eylau in 1809, not his simultaneous invasion of Spain and Portugal. At least Trafalgar gets a mention, but ignores poor Admiral Collingwood who actually won the battle, as Nelson was shot during the fighting. Andy doesn't mention once the awkward friendship between Napoleonic France and James Madison's United States, culminating in the War of 1812 between the United States and the British in Canada. Probably because America lost this war (although the Royal Navy was badly beaten by the Americans) when the British captured New York and Washington. Hooray! (Sorry, Americans. In fairness, feel free to raise a glass to your victory over us at Saratoga in 1777. You earned it). Andy completely skims over the reasons why Napoleon declared himself Emperor.
Shortly before Christmas 1800, Napoleon was nearly killed during an attempted assassination/terrorist attack (funny of Andy not to mention this) in Paris, perpetrated by Royalist exiles. This coincided with Napoleon's desire to recreate a French ruling family for the purposes of international prestige, political continuity after his death, and his own greedy ambitions. A referendum in 1803 gave overwhelming support to Napoleon becoming the new Emperor of the French - ratified by the National Assembly and Senate, Napoleon accepted and became Emperor in early 1803. However his coronation was not until 1804. But rather than gaining prestige among the royalties of Europe, this in fact made Napoleon's position even worse, as kings and emperors did not accept the legitimacy of this upstart Corsican who had dared to crown himself. When the war resumed in 1804, it did not stop until Napoleon was utterly defeated ten years later.You could have at least mentioned this, Andy.
|Napoleon continued to win victories on continental Europe, and by 1812 his empire included all of it except Sweden, Portugal and, near Asia, the Ottoman empire. But Napoleon’s undoing was his invasion of Russia in the winter of 1812. It is virtually impossible to conquer Russia with a wintertime invasion, because the weather is frightfully cold and the Russian people are extremely resilient, willing to live on rats rather than surrender. The German Adolf Hitler failed in a similar mistake in invading Russia during the wintertime in World War II.||
Why the mention of Hitler? And what's this crap about rats? And as an aside, the assertion that wintertime invasions in Russia are virtually impossible would have been news to the Mongols, who a few hundred years prior didn't seem to have any trouble with the "frightfully cold" weather (perhaps because central Asia is even worse) when they swept through and conquered the place. Napoleon's invasion of Russia in 1812 was indeed a disaster, and the beginning of the end for his empire.
By early 1812, Napoleon did indeed control Europe aside from the areas which Andy mentions, ruling them either directly, through allies, or through putting his brothers and sisters onto vacant thrones. The British, though, remained a threat, and so in order to cripple Britain Napoleon implemented the Continental System. This effectively forbade ports under French control from accepting British trade. It was Napoleon's hope that this would bankrupt Britain. It didn't. Up in Russia, the young Czar Alexander II had initially promised Napoleon that he would play along, but the Czar was increasingly influenced by his anti-French court, and the lure of British money if he continued trading. As relations between Paris and St Petersburg stuttered to a halt, Napoleon prepared to invade Russia in order to close its ports to the British and remove his last major adversary on the European landmass.
The invasion, beginning in the spring of 1812, was initially a huge success. The Russians retreated deeper and deeper into their own country, allowing Napoleon's 800,000-strong Grand Army - the largest single army in world history up to that point - to capture towns, cities, and huge expanses of land. However this overstretched the army's lines of supply and communication, frustrating Napoleon as he sought to crush the Russians in an open battle. He got this at Borodino in September 1812. The Russians, running out of places to retreat into, turned and stood to defend Moscow; and at the three-day Battle of Borodino, the largest battle in history up to that point, the French and Russians fought each other to a bloody stalemate. The Russians withdrew beyong Moscow, allowing Napoleon to enter the city. However he found Moscow deserted, and his plans to spend the winter there were scuppered when the Russians burned Moscow to the ground.This left Napoleon with three choices. He could stay in Moscow until spring - there was still enough food in the city to let his army scrape through the winter. Or he could march on St Petersburg, which was a long trek to seize Russia's capital. Or he could retreat south, towards the warmer, fertile Ukraine. As he feared what plots might be hatched in Paris while he was stuck in Moscow all winter, and as he feared getting stuck halfway between Moscow and Petersburg when the snows came, Napoleon decided to retreat - but had to go southwest, the way he came, as the southern route was blocked by the Russian army. The Grand Army's subsequent retreat from Moscow is one of the most infamous episodes in history. Hundreds of thousands of soldiers died from starvation, extreme cold, or were cut down, captured, and painfully executed by Cossacks. When the remnants of the army reached friendly Lithuania in January 1813, there were perhaps 40,000 men left - out of an original 800,000. Napoleon had abandoned his army to race back to Paris. Arriving in early 1813, he set about raising a new army. But the losses he had incurred in Russia - not just in men but in horses, equipment, artillery, wagons, etc - were so severe that hew was never able to rebuild his army into the invincible fighting machine it had been. The other European powers, seeing their opportunity, raised their armies and declared war on France.
|Napoleon made other strategic mistakes also. His blockade against Great Britain in 1806, known as the Continental System, did not help him. His Peninsular War against Spain from 1808 to 1813 was hurtful also.||"Hurtful"? What, was the Peninsular War rude to Napoleon? The Peninsular War was a brutal conflict, with appalling atrocities committed by both the French and the Spanish. Backed up by the British, the Portugese and Spanish gradually drove the French back until, by early 1814, they were poised to invade southern France. But this was just a sideshow. The Russians had chased the French into eastern Europe, while the powerful Prussians, Austrians, and Swedish joined in the war effort. Napoleon's attempts to make peace were unsuccessful, and despite some stunning French victories over Allied forces, throughout 1813 and 1814 the sheer numbers of the Allies drove Napoleon's forces all the way back to Paris.|
|By 1813 Napoleon’s army was weak enough for the Fourth Coalition to defeat it, at the Battle of Leipzig. By 1814 Napoleon could see that he would have to give up his throne, and his opponents sent him off to an island in Mediterranean known as Elba. Napoleon remained banished there for a year, but escaped in March 1815 to grab power over France again for “The Hundred Days.” But in June 1815, the Prussia and Great Britain defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo, and this time Napoleon was shipped to the distant island of St. Helena in the South Atlantic, where he died in 1821. About six years ago scientists analyzed hair samples from Napoleon’s corpse and found arsenic, and concluded that he died from poisoning. But then other scientists said that the arsenic was from hair tonic, not poisoning, and that no one had murdered Napoleon after all.||
Abandoned by his generals, his family, and the French people who wanted an end to the war, Napoleon abdicated on 11th April 1814 and was indeed shipped away to rule Elba. In his absence the Allies restored the French monarchy, but the fat, decadent Louis XVIII was extremely unpopular. When Napoleon escaped and returned to France in February 1815, the French people overwhelmingly welcomed him back. Alas, the Allies immediately sent military forces and at Waterloo on 18th June 1815, a combined Belgian-Dutch-British army under the Duke of Wellington, and a Prussian army under Prince von Blücher, trounced Napoleon.
Andy is at least right that Napoleon was exiled to the tiny, isolated island of St Helena (he had tried to flee to America, but gave up), but loses points for wittering on about conspiracy theories and then disproving them himself. Why bother? Napoleon died of stomach cancer - from which he had been suffering since his 30s - as had his father and grandfather before him. And so ended poor old Napoleon. His young son, Napoleon II (although he never actually reigned) was raised in Vienna and died of tuberculosis in his late teens. His nephew, also called Napoleon, joined the army, became President of the French Republic in 1848, and in 1852 declared himself Emperor, until forced to abdicate in 1870 following defeat in the Franco-Prussian War. Finally, Napoleon's last living relative, the young Prince Napoleon, joined the British Army and was killed by a Zulu warrior in the 1879 Anglo-Zulu War - although conspiracy theories quickly popped up that the British had snuffed him and blamed it on the Zulus.Well Andy, that was just awful. The history of the twenty-four year Napoleonic Wars, which raged across the entire planet, changed the course of European and global history, and claimed nearly as many lives as World War One, reduced to this pissy little crapfest. Poor Napoleon. He must be spinning in his ugly marble tomb at Les Invalides. Here's to L'Empereur, mes amis! We weren't able to save him from the chopping-block of Conservapedian rhetoric, but let's see if we can try and rescue Toussaint L'Ouverture, Simon Bolivar, and (for some strange, anachronistic reason) Sun Yat-sen from the foul clutches of Christofascist historical revionism...
Congress of Vienna
|In the aftermath of Napoleon’s defeat, European nations convened in Vienna, Austria to hold the “Congress of Vienna.” Prussia, Austria, Great Britain, Russia and France were all there. Austrian Prince Klemens von Metternich, who was chairman of the proceeding, proposed establishing a “balance of power” among rival nations to ensure that no single nation could threaten the others. Metternich established a set of alliances between nations that required them to assist others if war broke out. This would protect all the nations against revolution or invasion, as the balance of power would shift in response to such threats. These alliances were called the Concert of Europe.||
This is painful to say, but Andy has actually done some impressive work here. Most history books - even those covering early nineteenth-century Europe - skim over the Congress of Vienna. But our Andy has actually grappled with the event. Well done, young Master Schlafly! Keep up the good work! For once.The Congress of Vienna, which met shortly after Napoleon's abdication in April 1814 and was wrapped up shortly before the Battle of Waterloo, was a major event in many ways. Firstly, it was the first time that the European powers got together in order to hash out a post-war plan. Secondly, it exposed the bitter resentments between European nations who, now that their nemesis Napoleon was gone, were free to pursue their old squabbles. Thirdly, it marked the last stand of the ancien regime. Fourthly - as Andy astonishingly gets right - it officially introduced the concept of the "balance of power" which would come to dominate European, and by extension global, politics until the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. In a combination of these factors, the Congress of Vienna dictated the course of European politics throughout the nineteenth century, and it is arguable that the standards implemented at Vienna were instrumental in encouraging the sort of secret diplomacy and alliance-making which led to the outbreak of the First World War, a hundred years later.
|The primary motivation of the Congress of Vienna was to prevent French aggression in the future, or any repetition of what Napoleon had done. Restoration of a balance of power would help protect the other nations and provide for peace in Europe for the future. There were also other goals for this meeting. Royal families feared revolutions in their own nations similar to what France had gone through with its revolution. In other words, the monarchies wanted “legitimacy”.||Again - astonishingly - Andy is right. Well, mostly. The Allies did arrive at Vienna with the intention of emasculating France, but due to their own squabbles and suspicions, and the superlative negotiating skills of France's wily Foreign Minister, the (in)famous Talleyrand, France came out of the Congress with a lot more than could be expected.|
|In addition to the Concert of Europe described above, the Congress also adopted these specific changes to the map of Europe:
||The treaties signed by the Congress were mostly geopolitical changes, as the Allies simultaneously tried to redraw the map of Europe to its pre-1789 frontiers, while at the same time trying to maximise their own territorial power. The biggest geopolitical change was the creation of the German Confederation to replace the defunct Holy Roman Empire - a new loose federation to unite the various German kingdoms and principalities into a common bloc. Additional treaty articles were a condemnation (but not abolition) of the slave trade, and colonial changes in Britain's favour. Old monarchies were restored throughout Europe, with the most notorious being the restoration of the arrogant, decadent, old-fashioned, hugely unpopular Louis XVIII to the French throne. Not a wise move, and certainly not conducive to European peace.|
|The impact of the new balance of power, the legitimacy of the monarchies and the specific nation-building was enormous throughout the West. A lasting peace in Europe resulted. France lost power, while Great Britain and Prussia gained it. Latin American governments established as colonies of European powers felt confident to declare their independence. Finally, and perhaps most of all, nationalism grew in Europe. A century later, this nationalism would result in the worst wars in the history of the world.||
Well done, Andy!! The Congress did indeed have a major impact! He's wrong that a lasting European peace was established - within a few years of the Congress, European states were back at war with one another (with Europe's approval, France went back to war with Spain in 1822, a mere seven years after the Napoleonic Wars ended), but he's generally right about the rest. Spain's colonies in Latin America saw their chance to break away, and nationalism did indeed surge in Europe. Particularly among Italians and Germans - under Napoleon, they had first been united into big states instead of petty little ones, and later in his wars, national identities formed in contrast to the French. People began thinking of themselves not as Venetians, Milanese, Romans, Neapolitans; or Bavarians, Wurtemmbergians, Prussians or Saxons - but as Italians, and Germans. This nationalism was a factor in the outbreak of the First World War, but before that, it had more immediate effects in Europe. Hopefully these will be discussed.Hey Andy, this is good stuff! Maybe there's hope for you yet!!
|There were many revolutions in addition to the American and French Revolutions, as the world threw off the yoke of monarchs and replaced them with more representative governments. The most successful of these was the Haitian Revolution (1791-1804) in Latin America. Revolutions in South America from 1810 to 1824 did bring independence from Spain, but failed to lead to prosperity in South America. Mexico won its independence from Spain in a Mexican Revolution that lasted from 1810 to 1821. A century later, from 1910 to 1919, the Mexican Revolution led to a constitution that advanced land reform, education and workers rights; historians also credit it for bringing some rights to women.||Ah, Andy's patented non-European history segment. Do we dare hope that he continues his previous good standard? Do we dare...?|
|The first Spanish colony in the New World was the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean, which was one of Christopher Columbus’s first discoveries. Today Hispaniola has two countries separated by mountains: its eastern two thirds is the Dominican Republic, while its western one-third is Haiti. The Dominican Republic has produced many great baseball players today, including Albert Pujols, Sammy Sosa, Pedro Martinez, Jose Reyes and Manny Ramirez.||Aww Andy, no!! What happened?? You were doing well (for about four paragraphs), and now this? UGH. What the hell have baseball players got to do with anything? Oh this is very disappointing. Not only has Andy veered off onto his stupid little factoid-fillet tangents, but he's got factual evidence wrong. Haiti and the Dominican Republic are separated by a border, not mountains. And the bit about baseball players is not only pointless, it's suspicious. Andy seems to be implying something about black people only being good at athletics, and only lists Dominicans when he is supposed to be talking about Haitians. Couldn't he research any famous Haitians? Dammit, Andy!! You were doing alright, and now you're back onto your latent racism and irrelevant, inaccurate factoids? Christ, man!!|
|In the Treaty of Ryswick in 1697, Spain ceded control of the western third of Hispaniola to France, which established a colony named Saint Dominique (also spelled as “Saint-Domingue”). A hundred years later, this colony became famous for several reasons: (1) it was the first independent black republic, (2) it was the only nation formed based on a successful slave revolt, and (3) it was the second colony after the United States to declare its independence in the New World, on Jan. 1, 1804. Haiti also had a recent revolution or uprising, in 2004.||Haiti's political events in 2004 are not relevant in a segment on the bloody late 1790's. Neither is the Treaty of Ryswick. Come on Andy.|
|The Haitian Revolution began when an African priest sparked an uprising by 100,000 slaves, led by Toussaint L’Ouverture in 1791. French troops eventually arrived in 1802 to suppress the revolution, and tricked L’Ouverture into boarding a French ship where he thought he would be able to sign a peace treaty granting the colony independence from France. Instead he was captured and returned to France, where he died in 1803 in a French prison (France has always had the worst prison conditions in Europe). But Dessalines, a general under L’Ouverture, fought on for freedom on the island, and Haiti successfully declared its independence on Jan. 1, 1804.||
Oh Jesus Christ. Is Andy trying to be comical, or is he pulling this out of a book published by the Ku Klux Klan? "an African priest"? Who, Andy? Didn't he have a name? In reality, this is - unsurprisingly - total bullshit. And - again, unsurprisingly - Andy has failed to give any context whatsoever.
When the French Revolution began, Haiti was a deeply divided society. An economically powerful colony, Haitian society was rather unique in the region for having three castes in its society - white landowners at the top (approx. 10-12% of the population), black slaves at the bottom (approx. 80% of the population), and in the middle, a unique class composed of freed black slaves and free mixed-race persons, often urban-based. Violence was frequent and tensions were high, and when news arrived in Port-au-Prince in 1789 of what was happening in the Estates-General and the National Assembly, the Haitian white landowners began agitating for independence from France. After all, theirs was by far the most economically powerful colony in the Carribean, and they wanted independence. But they had no intention of freeing their slaves. Agitators among the free black middle class, notably Julian Raymond and Vincent Ogé, wrote and spoke about civil rights for free blacks. The whites responded by executing such men in appallingly painful ways. This, unsurprisingly, just made things an awful lot worse.
The "African priest" to whom Andy is referring to was called Dutty Boukman (yes, Andy, he had a name), and at a religious ceremony on 21st August 1791, he gave the signal for a mass slave uprising. This spread extremely quickly, and within weeks the majority of Haiti's white population (and many of the free blacks) had been executed in all manner of painful ways. The Legislative Assembly in Paris responded by granting equal rights to the free black population, and sent a small army to quell the revolt: 6,000 French soldiers against 100,000 slaves. You can imagine what happened. Meanwhile the British and Spanish sided with the slaves against French forces on the island, and by 1793 the French had been beaten. Casualties were in the vicinity of 24,000 whites and over 110,000 blacks. Most of whom, of all colours, died awful deaths. Defeated, the French had little choice but to declare the abolition of slavery in 1794. But by this point, Haiti was already lost to France.
Around this point, a former domestic slave now calling himself Toussaint L'Ouverture, ("Opener of the Path", or along those lines) gained control of the slave armies. An exceptional strategist, diplomat, and logistician, L'Ouverture organised the slave rebels into a professional army, threw out the remaining French, did likewise for the Spanish and British, and invaded neighbouring Santo Domingo to free slaves there. He succeeded, and by 1801 the island was under his control. However by this point, Napoleon was in control in France. Pressured by his wife Josephine (a white Carribean creole) and economic arguments, he sent an army in 1801 to reconquer the island. L'Ouverture was pushed back, betrayed by several of his allies and generals, and accepted a French offer of amnesty. If L'Ouverture agreed to amalgamate his forces into those of the French Republican Army, the French commander said, he could retain his command and the fighting would stop. After all, weren't they all fighting for the Rights of Man?L'Ouverture took the bait and, as Andy says, he was spirited off to France where he died, alone and riddled with pneumonia, in early 1803. When it became apparent to the Haitians that the French planned to re-institute slavery, fresh rebellions broke out. Isolated by a British naval blockade, surrounded by rebels, losing black allies as news spread of French atrocities against captured slaves, and wracked with yellow fever, the French were defeated. Napoleon had by this point already sold Louisiana and was faced with the resumption of the war in Europe, so he was not particularly interested in the New World and soon gave up on Haiti. The victor, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, proclaimed Haitian independece in 1804, proclaimed himself Emperor of Haiti later that year, and quickly found himself running a country which the outside world wanted nothing to do with. Over the coming decades, Haiti went from the most prosperous economy in the Caribbean to a poverty-stricken state, isolated by the world, forced to pay crippling reparations to France, while life under a string of dictators was little better than life under slavery. The reason Haiti is a "failed state" now is not just because of its own failings, but because the outside world essentially cut off all diplomatic and economic contact with the world's first free black state. It was nice of Andy to end on a happy note of independence, but it would have been more accurate to give a description of how we, the West, buggered it all up. As usual.
|In the Spanish colonies, creoles (pronounced KREE-oles, and meaning Europeans born in the colonies) were leading revolutions to gain independence from their Spanish rulers. Creole Generals Simon Bolivar and Jose de San Martin led Venezuela, Ecuador, and Argentina to independence and with the help of Bernardo O’Higgins, Chile was also freed in 1818. Bolivar freed the rest of the colonies at the Battle of Ayacucho in 1824, and attempted to establish the unified nations of “Gran Colombia” and “United Provinces of Central America”, but both collapsed after only a few years.||Why is Andy so preoccupied with race? It sounds as though he is hammering home the message that only white people can achieve political change. A peculiar insistence...|
|Brazil won its independence in a peaceful manner. It was a colony of Portugal, and when Napoleon invaded Spain and Portugal in 1807, the family of the Portuguese monarch fled to Brazil. Prince John, the future King John VI, declared the large Brazilian capital of Rio de Janeiro to be the capital of both Brazil and Portugal. In 1822, after the defeat of Napoleon and the return of King John VI to Portugal, the creoles (people of European descent born in the colonies) demanded independence for Brazil. King John declared his son Dom Pedro as ruler of the newly independent Brazil. Brazil was thereby the only Latin American country to be ruled by a king after it gained its independence.||This is all over the place. Andy started in 1818, now jumps back to 1807, and skips ahead to 1822. It's possible that he is trying to order this geographically rather than chronologically, but even then it is random and disconnected. Notice that Andy gives us another definition of "creole", in the space of nary a dozen words since the last one. Why? What's the importance? Oh, and Brazil was not ruled by a King, but by an Emperor. Get it right.|
|In 1810 in Mexico, a war for independence was initiated by Catholic priest Father Miguel Hidalgo from Dolores, who rallied mestizos (people of mixed Indian and European blood) in a rebellion against Spain. This revolt was memorable because it was the first time a rebellion was led in South America by the mestizos and not by the creoles. Led by Hidalgo, the mestizos marched to Mexico City, but were defeated in 1811 by the Spanish and the creoles. Hidalgo was executed in 1811 and then succeeded by Father José Maria Morelos, who also lost to the creoles, led by Augustin de Iturbide in 1815. The struggle ended in 1821, when Mexico successfully gained independence from Spain.||Father Hidalgo gets a geographic place of origin, but nobody else does. Race crops up again, this time with no relation to the pithy narrative whatsoever.|
|An Indian governor named Benito Juarez enacted reforms including the redistribution of land to the poor and separation of church and state. He was exiled by Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, who was the president of Mexico four times following the revolution against Spain. During his rule, Santa Anna was unable to stop Texas from seceding from Mexico in 1845, an act which fueled the Mexican-U.S. War. In 1848, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo brought an end to the U.S.-Mexican War, giving the United States Southwest territories including California and New Mexico. Benito Juarez again rose to power in 1861, and strongly opposed the French occupation of Mexico in 1862, and especially the Austrian archduke Maximilian.||
Andy gives no context whatsoever to French and Habsburg meddling in Mexico in the 1860s. Agustin (not "Augustin", Andy) de Iturbide proclaimed himself Emperor of Mexico in Septmeber 1821, emulating Napoleon's imperial control of Spain itself a decade earlier. The Empire of Mexico was vast, stretching from northern California to eastern Texas, to southern Panama; and Iturbide struggled throughout his brief reign with breakaway factions in Central America and Texas. Seeing which way the wind was blowing, he dissolved the Empire in October 1823. This infuriated one of his generals, Santa Anna, who launched a military coup d'etat in Mexico City, creating a republic with himself at its head.
This Republic of Mexico stumbled through worsening economic problems, exacerbated by military defeat by the United States in 1848. European powers loaned money to Mexico for modernisation and industrialisation, but Mexico was increasingly incapable of keeping up with the debt repayments. In 1861, President Benito Juarez defaulted on the debt payments, prompting the British, French, and Spanish to send a military force to occupy Veracruz until the debts were repaid. While the Spanish and British were happy to just sit and wait, the French - now led by Emperor Napoleon III - saw an opportunity to revive the Mexican Empire. With the USA too busy fighting the first stages of the Civil War to care what happened in neighbouring Mexico, the French maneouvered an Austrian prince, Maximilian von Habsburg, onto the new Mexican throne in 1864.
The Second Mexican Empire was not very successful. Endless civil war between the Republicans and Royalists, the former secretly supplied by the USA and the latter backed by French troops, resulted in political stalemate. By enacting policies which tried to take a middle-of-the-road approach, Maximilian lost support on both sides, and when Napoleon III withdrew French troops in 1866 due to American and international objections, it was all over. Maximilian was captured by the rebels and executed by firing squad on June 19th, 1867.Great work, Andy. At least try to read a book. Please?
|When the French left Mexico in 1867, Juarez was followed by dictator Porfirio Diaz, of Indian descent, who encouraged building projects and economic growth but unsuccessfully distributed land and failed to resolve problems among the working class such as low wages. Diaz found opposition in Francisco Madero, who founded the “Anti-Reelection Party” and was a firm supporter of democracy. Madero called for an uprising in 1910, marking the beginning of the Mexican Revolution, which lasted until 1917. Other prominent figures of the Mexican Revolution included cowboy Francisco “Pancho” Villa, and peasant leader Emiliano Zapata. Control of Mexico often changed hands and many were assassinated, including Madero, who was then replaced by Diaz’s ally General Victoriano Huerta, who then fled and was replaced by Venustiano Carranza. Carranza met his downfall after tricking and killing Emiliano Zapata in 1919, which turned everyone against Carranza. He attempted to flee Mexico, but was killed. These events marked the end of the Mexican Revolution.||The French left Mexico in 1866, not 1867. Benito Juarez' return to power as President of the Mexican Republic saw the continuation of middle-of-the-road, sometimes contradictory, policies which failed to appease either progressives or reactionaries. These led, in part, to the 1910-1917 Mexican Revolution - although fighting continued until 1920, and resumed from 1926-1929. Andy least hints at the confusing nature of the Mexican Revolution, with its many sides, but fails to discuss who any of these men were. He also - oddly - ignores the USA's intervention in the fighting, including an army led by General John Pershing of First World War fame, in 1916. Probably because Pershing was forced to retreat ignominously. And we can't have American failures spoiling the crisp, clean pages of Conservapedia, can we...?|
|A Mexican constitution was established as a result of the Revolution, which increased the rights of workers and in some cases, women, and, strengthened the land redistribution system. In 1920, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (in Spanish, the Partido Revolucionario Institucional or PRI) was organized. It came to power in 1929 and was the most prominent party in Mexico for the next century. The IRP gave politicians in Mexico City control, and many of the Mexican constitutional provisions were disregarded by PRI presidents.||Well at least Andy was able to end one rambling diatribe without bitching about the modern world. We should be grateful for that, at least. Although as has been said before - when praise comes for doing something slightly less terribly than normal, it's hardly a positive sign.|
|The movements towards revolution and nationalism spread to China. Sun Yixian was just one of the many Chinese inspired by the unified nations arising in Europe. A rebellion arose in 1911, which ended the rules of the Qing (also known as Manchu) dynasty. Confucianism was rejected by the reformers, who viewed it as old-fashioned, and reforms were sought to give more rights to workers and the poor. The revolutions did not resolve much, but marked the beginning of a period of strife and unrest for China in the early 1900s, which would lead to its establishment as a Communist nation in later decades.||Oh for crying out loud, Andy, why did you even bother putting this in here? The Chinese Revolution of 1911 was born of a long, complicated series of interlinked economic, political, social, ecological, cultural, military, and diplomatic crises stretching back to the early nineteenth century. As Andy discusses (some) of this in the next lecture - albeit with abysmal lack of skill - we'll leave it for now and suffice it to say that tossing in the Chinese Revolution here, without giving any context, is like narrating American history by going from a long discussion of the Pilgrim Fathers straight onto the Cold War, with a couple of sentences to sum up the nineteenth century. Points off for bitching about communism. Seeing as China has bankrolled the West since the 1990s, Andy should be more careful what he says. He doesn't want to go back to a (gasp) non-capitalist system devoid of loans, currency mergers, and interest payments, does he...?|
Revolutionary Art and Literature
|In the early 1800s, art (including music) and literature underwent “revolutions” similar to the political ones. Romanticism was the major artistic movement, reflecting an emphasis on thoughts, feelings and nature. Lord Byron was a leading romanticist who fought for the independence of Greece. This emphasis on feelings mirrored a political romanticism that promoted democracy and the needs of the “common man” or everyday person.||Oh, this is novel. Andy's patented Pogo-Stick of History™ bounces us violently from the bank boardrooms of twenty-first century China all the way back to the salons of Georgian Europe. That's quite a leap, Andy. He evidently only knows one artistic movement, as he neglects to mention Neo-Classicism or Realism, both of which co-existed alongide Romanticism. He also neglects to mention what Romanticism was. In a nutshell, Romanticism was an artistic movement which emerged in the late eighteenth century and emphasised - as Andy vaguely gets right - nature and idealistic settings. It gained in popularity due to the simultaneous progress of the Industrial Revolution. As British, and later European and American, society shifted from rural to urban, farming to industry, and as the cities became ghastly hellholes of pollution, disease, overcrowding, and abysmal life expectancy (here's a factoid for Andy - in the 1820s, the average life expectancy in industrial cities like Sheffield and Birmingham was 15), people of all classes embraced Romanticism - with its pretty pictures of happy people in sunny meadows - as a form of escapism from the dirty, dangerous, and unhappy lives they lived. It had nothing to do, as Andy claims, with politics. "Democracy" was a dirty word for the first half of the nineteenth century, as it had connotations of the bloodshed of the French Revolution. Andy gets one point for mentioning Lord Byron, who indeed fought alongside Greek nationalists in the 1830 War of Independence against the Ottoman Empire, but we'll take that point off him for not bothering to mention a single other painter, poet, musician, playwright, novelist, composer, architect, or any other form of artist, who was a contemporary to Byron..|
|In music, the greatest composer in the history of the world burst onto the scene in the early 1800s: Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827). He revolutionized instrumental music and took it to new heights never before thought possible. His achievement was all the more remarkable because he became totally deaf before the age of 40, and before he composed his greatest works. A German like most great composers, Beethoven’s works capture an intensity and expressive emotion that surpassed even vocal music. It was Beethoven’s great work that led an English critic to declare, “All arts aspire to the condition of music.”||Was Beethoven the greatest composer in history? It'd be interesting to know what Mozart fans have to say about this. Personally, I prefer Bach. He could beat up Beethoven any day. The language here is awful. "Burst onto the scene". Sounds like that scene from Alien where the xeno bursts out of John Hurt's chest. Note Andy's implicit claim that only Germans can write good music. He eventually ends with one of his trademark signatures - an uncited, unsourced soundbite from a nameless person. Bravo, Andy. At least you're consistent in your crapness.|
|In the late 1800s, impressionism moved painting further away from its traditions. It began in France and continued into the 1900s. The chief feature of impressionism was to paint the transient effects of color and light, and attempt to capture a fleeting image or “impression”. The feeling of an image was emphasized more than the detail (see attached). Major impressionistic painters included Edouard Manet, Claude Monet, Pierre Auguste Renoir and Paul Cezanne. Manet, Monet, Renoir and others began emphasizing color and lighting as early as the late 1860s. They often painted landscapes, and insisted on remaining outdoors to until completion of the work, unlike predecessors who preferred to complete such work in the studio. Renoir, for example, is known for brilliance of color, intimate charm in his subjects, and a harmony of his lines.||Oh Lord, this page on Conservapedia must have a painting attached. Poor artist. What a way to be commemmorated - in a Conservapedia article. Andy is trying to sound sophisticated here, but ends up coming across as one of those pretentious upper-class-wannabe twats who goes to art galleries and talks bullshit, loudly, in a vain effort to impress whatever bored companion he's dragged along with him, while nearby patrons snigger up their sleeves at him.|
|Though the impressionistic movement in painting dissolved by the mid-1880s, it changed the path of art forever in its rejection of traditional Western approaches to subject matter. The artist Vincent van Gogh, for example, was greatly influenced by the impressionists. There was a musical impressionism also, which emphasized mood and understatement and reflected its composers’ view that pure sound (like color) is an end to itself.||Apparently Impressionist artists dissolved. What were they, salt sculptures? Andy's attempt to describe Impressionist music is just... just awful. Where did he get this information from? The back of a beer mat?|
|Realism was the new form of literature that told the dark side of the industrial revolution: the overcrowded, filthy conditions in which many workers struggled.||Oh, Andy actually does know this! Shame it's tacked right on at the end. Points off for not saying that Realism was a contemporary of Romanticism. And wait, was that it? Oh. What was the point of this segment? There weren't corresponding sections on art and music in the Middle Ages, or Ancient Rome, and there aren't any for the remainder of the nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries. Why not? Dammit, Andy! I want to know how the Crisis of the Third Century was represented in Roman poetry, how Jackson Pollock's painting technique reflected contemporary geopolitical concerns, and how the lyrics of 50 Cent reveal anxieties about the shifting social milieu of modern urban life. Come on, Andy. If nothing else, you can at least be consistent in your bullshit!|
|Nationalism was a concept that arose at the same time as Romanticism. Nationalists believed loyalty to one’s nation was of utmost importance. They felt that society should be viewed as a whole, rather than as being made up of individuals. In Germany and Italy, nationalism inspired unification. The Congress of Vienna had left the independent city-states of Italy under Austrian control in the north and Spanish control in the south. It had established Germany as a weak confederation of 39 states.||
Andy trips himself up here. He started wittering on about nation-states back in Lecture Four, yet here he claims that nationalism (which logically is contemporaneous to nation-states) is an entirely nineteenth-century phenomenon. Predictably, he's talking our of his arse.
Nationalism is one of those concept whose origins professional historians spend their lives squabbling over. There is no point giving the word a definition here (and thank Christ that Andy hasn't trundled out his Mirriam-Webster online dictionary), as historians, social scientists, and anthropologists can't agree what it means. It can only be understood in relation to such equally vague concepts as modernisation, identity, culture, ethnicity, "Self" and "Other", Primordialist and Constructionist and whatever other nebulous ideas we want to throw in - this makes "nation", "nationhood", "nationalism", et centera impossible to pin down and restrict to one definition. It doesn't help that different types of scholar - Classical Marxists, Frankfurt-School Marxists, Postmodernists, Social Constructivists, etc - interpret "nation" and "nationalism" in very different ways.
If we take Andy's pithy little definition of nationalism as "loyalty to one's nation", well, that was visible back in the Copper Age. At least in the form of loyalty to one's king and imagined identity. His second definition, "that society should be viewed as a whole", is visible in societies stretching back to Predynastic Egypt and the very earliest village-states of Mesopotamia. But this latter definition, in fairness to Andy, is at least vaguely close to what a cadre of mid-twentieth century historians identified as the root of nationalism - the idea that people of a single ethnicity and identity should be corralled into a single nation-state, rather than spread between areas.
In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, historians pointed to the Napoleonic Wars as the catalyst - the emulsion, if you like - of European nationalism. The threat of Revolutionary invasion, they argued, caused peoples to amalgamate according to a single identity. Let's take an example from my own country. Before the Napoleonic Wars, such historians argued, there was no such thing as a "British" identity. There were Scots, Welsh, Irish, and English; Anglicans, Catholics, Methodists and Presbyterians; town-dwellers and villagers; nobles and gentry and commoners; Royalists and Parliamentarians; industrialists and agrarians; et cetera ad infinitum - with countless little sub-divisions within all of those. Yet during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, with the corresponding threat of a French invasion, these variegated identities merged into a single "British" identity as the "Self" rallied to the threat of the "Other". Thus the existence of another nation causes one's own nation to crystallise. This spread, and during Europe's colonisation of the planet in the late nineteenth century - as was argued - we Europeans spread this false, constructed sense of "nationalism" to the rest of the world, where it caused untold problems as artificial identities clashed. "The Black Man's Burden" - exporting the false concept of artificial, conflicting, national identities to the non-European world - is very much a problem today; just as it was for Europeans in the 1800s. The continual bodycount in Africa, Asia, and South America - all in the name of nationalism - makes the bodycount of Victorian and Edwardian Europe look negligible. Don't forget that.
However, this explanation has been challenged since the nineteenth century. Is national identity totally artificial, or is it a primordial thing? I've bitched here about "nation" being a complete crock of shit over which people senselessly kill each other, but is the root of nationalism a primordial instinct rather than a fabricated idea? After all, we all form identities based on "the group" - family, race, age, language, street, town, province: isn't nation simply the next logical step? Can nation and nationalism be traced to the Industrial Age, the Renaissance, the Middle Ages, the Ancient World? Is it political or biological - as a social yet competitive species, do we naturally form group identities which can only be defined against "the Others", do we make it up out of thin air, or does it evolve without our realising? And as for "Self" and "Other", there is a chicken-and-egg situation: which came first, Self or Other? These questions are, perhaps, unanswerable. Yet they show how the whole idea of nation and nationalism are extremely nebulous, and how Andy's shitty little definition is unutterably pathetic.
Ok, let's try to get back on track. We can say, with a reasonable sense of confidence, that while nationalism did not emerge in the nineteenth century, it certainly strengthened. The centralisation and bureaucratic expansion of states in the 1800s did reinforce a sense of national identity. Newspapers, rail transport, bureaucracy, the extension of voting rights (in some European states), urbanisation, commercialisation, constructed ethnic mythology ("Chivalry" and the myths of the Middle Ages, as said in Lecture Five, are Victorian inventions as European peoples sought a collective identity), and "the Other" as encountered through war and colonial expansion, arguably did cement the idea of "nation" in European minds. This was arguably identifiable in Central Europe and the Italian peninsula. For centuries, Central Europe had been divided into a myriad of petty little states nominally unified by the Holy Roman Empire while Italy had been the same sans the unifying Empire. When Napoleon conquered these areas, he formed the first unified states in those areas - the Confederation of the Rhine, and two states both called "Kingdom of Italy" (one north of Rome, one south of it). The Congress of Vienna bumbled along in its attempt to return these regions to their old status quo, but the clock could not be turned back. For the first time, people thought of themselves not as Venetians, Modenas, Neapolitans, Sicilians, Romans, Genoese, or Milanese - they now saw themselves as Italians. Similarly, Central Europe's intelligentsia promoted the idea that German-speaking peoples were not Bavarians, Wurtemmbergians, Austrians, Westphalians, Saxons, Prussians, Hessians, etc - they were Germans.This continues today. We are not British, Spanish, or Poles - we are Europeans. We are not Nigerians, Togolese, or Namibians - we are Africans. But if the Mirror Universe of Star Trek and the Imperium of Man from Warhammer 40,000 have taught us anything, it is that we Terrans are ultimately all one. Long Live the God-Emperor of Holy Terra, and Shatner on the Imperial Starship Enterprise! Ok, enough fun. Let's crack on with Andy's effort to explain the Risorgimento and the Volksgemeinschaft. This should be fun!
|In Italy, a prominent nationalist named Giuseppe Mazzini began to argue strongly for the unification of Italy as one nation, and formed the “Brotherhood of Young Italy” in 1831. Mazzini’s call for unification was premature, however; rulers of the various Italian city-states were not ready to unite. But Mazzini’s efforts were not in vain. Twenty years later, a fierce patriot and former member of the Brotherhood of Young Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi, led a revolution in Southern Italy, while King Victor Emmanuel II of Sardinia-Piedmont and his prime minister Count Cavour led one in northern Italy. Garibaldi zealously rallied an entirely volunteer army in Sicily and successfully overthrew the Spanish Bourbon king of the Kingdom of Two Sicilies. Count Cavour eliminated Austrian control in northern Italy and the Italian people voted to unite their country in 1861. Venice and Rome were both added by 1870.||
Is this it?? WHAT?? Andy has been obliquely wittering on about nationalism since Lecture One, and this is what he comes up with?? Two f***ing paragraphs?? Jesus Christ!!
Alright, alright, let's do this. Following Napoleon's defeat, the Allies at the Congress of Vienna returned the Italian peninsula to its 1789 frontiers. Without a map it's hard to describe this, so grab yourself a map or a globe before reading on. Got one? Good. Right, it's 1815. Corsica belongs to France. Over there in the north-west of Italy was the Kingdom of Piedmont (which also controlled the island of Sardinia, the southernmost big one), the most economically and militarily powerful state due to its trade links and military support from France. Over there in north-east and north-centre Italy, the Austrians were back in control - much to the chagrin of the locals, as Napoleon had given them their own principalities but the Austrians took this away (remember that Napoleon was born in Corsica, and grew up speaking Italian). Vienna ruled its Italian states through puppet Princes who didn't speak Italian, spent more time in Vienna than Italy, and couldn't care less about their Italian subjects. In the centre of the peninsula, the Pope retained land as the ancient Papal States, a relic of the Early Middle Ages. The southern half of the peninsula, and the island of Sicily, was the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (also known as the Kingdom of Naples). This is Italy, c.1815. The time is ripe for the reunification of one Italy - the Risorgimento!
Now, as mentioned, Napoleon had kicked the Austrians out and given the northern Italians their own states, which were allied to him and stuck by his side even as Allied soldiers were swarming through Napoleon's palace. He had put one of his generals on the throne of Sicily, and that man reformed Sicily's unbelievably antiquated laws until it was vaguely in-line with the rest of Napoleon's empire. When the Congress of Vienna tried to bring old King Ferdinand back to Sicily, and put the Austrians back in charge of northern Italy - with their old pro-Austrian, pro-aristocrat policies - the Italians were understandably pissed off. The Kingdom of Piedmont, backed up by the new Republic of France (and after 1851, the Second Empire of France under Emperor Napoleon III), threw the Austrians out of northern Italy with French military support. Here's a factoid to keep Andy happy - our word "magenta", referring to a lovely shade of purply-pink which newspaper printers use as one of their base dyes, is named after the 1859 Battle of Magenta, in which the Franco-Piedmontese army inflicted such casualties on the Austrians that the river ran pink. At the same time, Giuseppe Garibaldi (with British and French military and financial support) had landed his Redshirts (a revolutionary group dedicated to Italian unification) in the Kingdom of Naples, and was marching on Naples itself. Nobody in Europe liked King Ferdinand of Naples - "The Dormouse", so named because he kept falling asleep at the opera - and nobody cared when he fled Naples. Through the exceptional diplomacy of Count Cavour (whom Andy, in fairness to him, does mention), Piedmont was able to maximise its territorial gains by playing the French and Austrians off against each other, convinced the British to leave Italy alone, and - most importantly - convinced Garibaldi to merge the (brief) Republic of Naples with the enlarged Kingdom of Piedmont. The Kingdom of Italy was proclaimed in 1861, its capital at Milan, consisting of all of modern Italy minus Rome and the Tyrol in the north-east, which was still under Austrian control. Rome and its environs remained under the control of the Pope, and nobody dared meddle with him - particularly as Rome was home to 5,000 French troops with modern artillery and early machine guns, to protect Il Papa.When French troops were pulled out in 1870 to fight in the Franco-Prussian War, Italy gained the Papal States and Rome, minus the Vatican City. Notably, this was also when the notion of Papal infallibility became canon. The Tyrol was gained through conquest and diplomacy during and after the First World War. For the remainder of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, Italy went through a rather chaotic Industrial Revolution and political scene. People lost confidence in the governments due to accusations of trasformismo - the claim that politicians were more interested in securing bonuses for themselves rather than actually bettering Italy. Domestic politics increasingly became split between the Italian Socialist Party (PSI) with its strongholds in urban areas, the Catholic-sponsored Italian Peoples' Party (PPI) with its stronghold among southern farmers, the Italian Liberal Party (PLI - accused by everyone of uncaring trasformismo), and the increasingly powerful Italian Communist Party (PCI). Throughout the period c.1861-1920, the PLI was most often in government although the PSI (often in coalition with the PPI) had the most votes. Dissatisfaction with the PSI, PPI and PLI encouraged the growth of the Communist movement, especially in the industrial cities of the north, and this in turn caused many liberals to turn to up-and-coming right-wing nationalists as the lesser of two evils. Foreign relations were also difficult, especially as Italy had chilly relationships with France and Britain, and as Italy's attempt to gain prestige by conquering an overseas empire met with a cataclysmic disaster when, at Adowa, Ethiopia in 1896, 15,000 Italian troops were slaughtered by the Ethiopian army. By the outbreak of the First World War, Italy was a highly unstable state in economic, political (domestic and international), and social terms. This is necessary for understanding why fascism emerged in Italy in the 1920s and spread to Germany. Andy really should have explained this, but predictably, he did an absolutely piss-poor job. Bravo, Andy. You are truly without equal.
|Germans were dissatisfied with the Confederation established by the Vienna settlement and the Frankfurt Assembly attempted unsuccessfully to unify in 1848. Prussia, the strongest “German” state, established a “Customs Union”—which resembled a national market system—and parliament. King Wilhelm I of Prussia chose Prime Minister Otto Van Bismarck in 1862. Fiercely patriotic to his native Prussia, Bismarck believed in “realpolitick” (or reality politics) and sought to unify Germany under Prussian control. He believed the only way this could be done was through a war. Bismarck’s motto by which to wage this war was “by blood and iron,” and without Parliament’s approval he forced the northern states to join the Northern German Confederation. When the southern city-states would not join, Bismarck tricked France into declaring the Franco-Prussian War, which Prussia won. This accomplished Bismarck’s goal of attaining southern Germany, which was now willing to accept Prussian rule. In 1871 the North and South were united into the new German Empire, the “Second Reich,” and Wilhelm was made “kaiser” (German word for “Caesar” or emperor, especially between 1871 to 1918).||
Andy is right that the intelligentsia of Central Europe were dissatisfied with the provisions of the Congress of Vienna. Let's put this in its context. Grab that globe again.
Prior to 1806, Central Europe (roughly where Germany, Austria, the Czech and Slovak Republics, and western Poland are now), was vaguely unified by the Holy Roman Empire. This was theoretically a single polity, but in reality was a loose collection of semi-independent states. Somewhat like the United States in its early days, or the modern European Union (all hail Imperium Europerum!). But by the late eighteenth century, the Imperium was effectively defunct. The Reichstag (Imperial parliament) had not met in decades, and since the 1648 Treaty of Westphalia (which ended the Thirty Years' War), individual component-states of the Imperium had been free to pursue their own foreign policy. Imperial expansion officially ended in 1648, but component members continued to expand in their own name - notably Austria and Prussia (on your globe, roughly the north-east of modern Germany). Austria and Prussia spent the last half of the 1700s bickering with each other in the "German Supremacy" to see who could control the Imperium, while the dozens of other small, petty little members of the Imperium switched allegiances according to who was winning at the time. By 1806, Napoleon had decisively defeated both Austria and Prussia, and under pressure from France, the Holy Roman Emperor, Francis II, quietly dissolved the Imperium in 1806. Napoleon needed some buffer states against them, so corralled several of the little states into the Confederation of the Rhine, roughly analogous to the western third of modern Germany. Prussia and Austria were resentful allies of Napoleon until 1813 - when the frozen remnants of the French army came limping back from Moscow, the powerful Austrians and Prussians seized their chance to join the Allies. This, it is arguable, helped reinforce a sense of a collective "German" identity as defined by contrast to the French.
At the Congress of Vienna, the Allies needed a replacement for the deceased Holy Roman Empire and Napoleon's Confederation of the Rhine, which had been dissolved. The solution was the German Confederation, under the nominal leadership of Prussia (the Austro-Hungarian Empire was big enough, and had enough problems, and the Prussians didn't fancy the Austrians sticking their fingers in Central Europe). But as was the case in Italy, this was not good enough for the intelligentsia and emerging middle classes of Central Europe, who had had a taste of statehood under Napoleon and now wanted a state of their own. In 1848 - as Andy gets half-arsed as usual - a series of revolutions sparked by middle-class liberal desires for voting rights and political reform, broke out in almost all European capitals and other cities, creating a few Republics (including France) and forcing surviving monarchies to reform their countries (strange that Andy neglected to discuss 1848 in greater detail; especially as the German revolutions were heavily influenced by Christianity). To cut a long story short, the desire to unify continued, and Prussia (the strongest state) pursued a policy of careful diplomacy with the other states of the Confederation until, by 1870, Prussia was by far the most powerful state. It defeated Denmark in a war in 1866, Austria in 1867, and in 1870 went to war with France. The resulting Franco-Prussian War was an immense conflict which at least deserves some mention.
Emperor Napoleon III, by 1870 a sick man, had terrible foreign relations. When he declared war on Prussia over a monarchical spat in Spain (fearing that the Prussians would stick a Prussian prince on the vacant throne in Madrid, thus surrounding France with hostile Prussians), France was badly unprepared. Although France had by far the most professional military force in Europe, the mobilisation process was unbelievably chaotic and the French army spent the first two months of the war simply bumbling around. To give an idea of the chaos, consider that several generals had to telegraph Paris to say that they did not know where their armies were; the majority of military supplies ended up getting shunted into a railway yard at Verdun because the wagons were unmarked and nobody knew what was in them; and the technical manuals for France's ultra-secret weapon, the mitrailleuse (a form of early machine gun, vaguely similar to the Gatling Gun) remained in the basement of the Ministry of War - untrained crews didn't know how to use the weapons, and the manuals weren't found until nearly sixty years late. French artillery was also badly outdated, the troops were badly demoralised, and the commanders were largely political men who had little or not command experience. Trust me - I wrote my undergraduate thesis on all this. To be fair, the Prussians weren;t much better off, but they had the advantage of numbers due to their immense conscript army. Early battleswere mostly stalemates, until the Battle of Sedan in September 1870 utterly destroyed the French army and led to the Prussians capturing Napoleon III. The war dragged on - a bloodless revolution in Paris created a Republic, and under the Government of National Defence, the French fought an extremely bitter war as the Prussians besieged Paris and fought volunteer armies in the provinces. When the starving Parisians finally surrendered to the Prussians shortly after New Year's Day 1871, a communist revolution in Paris led to one of the bloodiest civil wars in recent history as government troops and communards fought for weeks in the streets of Paris. Please, please read about the Franco-Prussian War. It really is worth a good read! There's even daring escapades in hot air balloons! Anyway, enough of my pet project. Prussia's eventual victory over France in early 1871 rallied the other German-speaking states (except Austria) to the Prussians, and on 18th January 1871 the Prussian King was declared Kaiser of the German Empire. Andy loses points for calling it the "Second Reich" - this was a name applied retrospectively by the Nazis.
From 1871, this new nation of "Germany" experienced very rapid industrialisation and military buildup, until by 1900, Germany's industrial production, commercial exports, and naval strength equalled or surpassed those of the previously most-powerful state: Great Britain. Foreign relations were also significantly affected. Austria, beaten and subordinated, grew closer to Germany - not least because of low prices on German goods and a growing sense of German union (albeit not as close as we might think; the Austrian elite viewed the Germans as upstarts, while the German elite viewed the Austrians as doddering relics of the eighteenth century). France and Russia grew closer together in mutual suspicion of this big new nation, and in 1901 signed the Entente Cordiale, assuring that if either one was attacked by Germany, the other would come to their aid. Britain grew increasingly close to this alliance as Germany's crash-programme of shipbuilding threatened to outnumber the Royal Navy.Hmm, that's a lot of material. Let's leave it here for the moment. So what have we learned? Well, nationalism - a vague concept - was unimaginably important in late-nineteenth century European nations, propelling Britain, France, Russia, Austria-Hungary, and the new nations of Italy and Germany - and all of the colonies possessed by these nations - into forming mutually-exclusive alliances. The result of this - as I'm sure you are already aware - was the industrial slaughter of the First World War. Why did Andy give this critical phase in world history such a pathetic little segment? Really, it's pathetic. Absolutely piss-poor. Even by his standards. And that's saying a lot.
The Industrial Revolution
|The industrial revolution was the transformation of society from being based mostly on farming and handicrafts into an economy based mostly on manufacturing and industry. England, which had the strongest economy in the world, was the first to undergo the industrial revolution, although some historians cite the iron industry in China under the Song dynasty and the textile industry in India as being forerunners to what happened in England. Regardless, the real industrial revolution began in 1760 in England and then, aided by the economic insights of Adam Smith, England’s economy expanded and its industrial revolution lasted until 1840.||
Oh, Christ. The steam-horn has hooted, our shift is about to start, and like the soulless proletarian denizens of Fritz Lang's Metropolis, off we trudge to our mindless jobs at the Manufactory of Truth. And there I was thinking I could sneak in a couple of quick ha'penny memory-erasers at the local gin-shop. Sigh. Well, like the dirty, diseased, starving, downtrodden workers of nineteenth-century Europe, we are faced with a long shift performing repetitive labour; unpicking Conservapedian crud in order to produce something worthwhile.
Glancing ahead, this segment is possibly the worst that Andy has thrown at us since this Lecture series began. It's just... just awful. Not even the Pogo-Stick of History™ can extricate us from the apocalyptic mess that is Andy's effort to explain the Industrial Revolution. The political Revolution is officially over. In the Brave New World of Andy's industrialism, this is the reality which life has thrown at us. Drop your muskets, comrades, and pick up a shovel. We've got a lot of shit to clean up.For Andy's information, the Industrial Revolution is another of those concepts/epochs/phases which is extremely contested by real historians. To his credit, he at least hints at this by describing predecessors to the events unfolding in late-eighteenth century Britain, but this just opens up another can of worms. Historians grapple with such concepts as "Pre-industrial", "Proto-industrial", and "Post-industrial", which are every bit as nebulous and open to interpretation as "Industrial". This isn't a good start. [Quick glance at Foreman Schlalfy's clock]. Christ, this is going to be a long shift. Where's that industrial-grade gin...?
Where, When and Why
|The industrial revolution began in England in the cotton textile industry, with new machines for spinning and weaving fabrics. England obtained much of its cotton from the South in the United States, picked by slaves on plantations. When Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in America, production of cotton soared and England’s factories bought up as much as the South could produce. England also imported cotton from Egypt and India, however; India is famous for its brightly colored fabrics and it exported a colored cotton known as calico. (The South overestimated England’s reliance on the South’s cotton when it made the decision to secede from the North in the Civil War; the South miscalculated that England would be economically required to help the South.)||
If Andy reorganised these paragraphs, he would be slightly less wrong. Here he is, starting with technological innovations, when he should be starting with the Agricultural Revolution (which he discusses a few paragraphs later). We'll discuss that a little later, at the point which Foreman Schlafly has decreed. Suffice it to say here that the Agricultural Revolution consisted of bureaucratic and management changes in British land ownership - common land was appropriated by the government, and large areas were turned into "enclosures". These were for the purposes of easier administration, but resulted in increased food output and increased rural unemployment. It's also the origin of all those pretty hedges we see in the British countryside today - they were planted in the mid-1700s as boundary-markers. This was necessary in creating the labour pool and food surplus which, while not intended for any greater purpose than easier administration, enabled urbanisation and industrialisation later in the century.Instead of discussing this, Andy launches into a discussion of 1860s America. He is right that for the first half of the nineteenth century, the United Kingdom (or "Great Britain", Andy, but not "England") imported most of its raw cotton from the southern United States. Cotton was so highly prized from the 1780s onwards that it became the most powerful exchangeable product in Britain, and hence, the world. Nobody wanted heavy old woollen clothes when they could have nice, light, easily-washable cottons. As historian Martin Daunton puts it, it was "Pants for Everyone!" (and remember, when we British say "pants", we mean your knickers). "King Cotton" was the backbone of the South's economy and the British Empire's import trade - raw cotton grown and harvested on slave plantations was shipped to the manufactories and mills of Lancashire, where workers (frequently young children or old people, treated no better than the slaves who cultivated the stuff) spun the cotton into threads, and wove this into textiles, in inhumanly-long shifts in filthy industrial towns, working 18-hour days for pennies a week, next to snapping, stabbing, hacking machinery with no safety guards. These textiles were either sold on the British and European markets, or shipped out to the far-flung territories of the British Empire. Andy buggers up the trade relations of the period. When the American Civil War cut off Southern cotton exports (due to the Federal naval blockade of the South), British companies simply began importing cotton from Egypt (the Confederates had indeed counted on British and French intervention due to the need for cotton, and while London and Paris did flirt with the idea of intervening against the Feds in 1861, they knew that supporting a slave-owning regime would spark revolutions among the Abolitionist populations of Manchester ("Cottonopolis", as contemporaries called it) and Lyons. So they stayed neutral). Anyway, Andy shouldn't be discussing the 1860s already. What happened to the late eighteenth century?
|England and the United States built canals to connect waterways and transport goods, and in 1807 American Robert Fulton started the first commercial steamboat service. Macadam (smoothly paved) roads and turnpikes helped distribute newly manufactured goods. In the early 1800s, the railroad emerged as a powerful form of transportation also.||Dear old Andy seems desperate to make it seem that the Americans industrialised at the same time as we did. Hate to say it Andy, but Britain industrialised long before the US of A. He at least mentions transport. In the context of the late eighteenth century, canals were by far the most efficient form of transport for the sort of heavy, bulky, low-value goods which characterised the early Industrial Revolution, like coal and cotton. A horse pulling a barge on a canal could haul much, much more than a horse hauling a wagon on a dirt road. Macadamised or "metalled" roads - hard surfaces covered with tar, the best in Europe since the days of the Roman Empire - did not make an appearance until later on. Andy doesn't mention what a turnpike is: a form of toll-collection whereby road users would pay for the right to use the road, and the money would (in theory) go towards maintenance and security of the road. Without wishing to encourage Andy's "America!America!America!" mentality, let's give Robert Fulton his due. He did indeed pioneer the steamboat service, something which we apparently never thought of (he even demonstrated his steamboat to Napoleon in 1807, but the Emperor wasn't impressed by newfangled gadgets). Transport was a major factor in Britain's industrialisation, as factories, mills, ports, and towns were connected with a very intricate, very modern (for the late 1700s), and very expensive web of canals. Canals meant that raw materials imported into the harbours, could be shipped to factories, and manufactured goods could be shipped back to the harbours for export; all without having to leave the water. Remember what they say about Manchester - "more canals than Venice". And it's true! Although small horse-drawn wagonways and plateways had existed in Britain for centuries, railways (not "railroads", Andy. British invention, so we'll use the British name) were not significant until technological improvements precipitated the "railway boom" of the 1840s. America experienced its own railway boom in the 1850s.|
|The United States, particularly in the North, industrialized its economy almost as quickly as England had, although the real manufacturing might of the United States was not seen until after it resolved its internal conflicts in the Civil War. England attempted to hide and conceal the secrets of its industrial revolution from continental Europe. The first European nation to follow England was Belgium in 1807, then France in 1848, and then Germany in 1870. The industrial revolution did not reach eastern Europe until the early 1900s, and China and India did not undergo the conversion until the mid-1900s.||Oh for God's sake Andy, stop piggybacking the United States onto Britain! We're a small country, and America is a big fat continent. We can't carry you all the time. Thank Christ that Canada doesn't want a piggyback too. Why is he trying to make it seem that the UK and US were neck-and-neck in the race for industrialisation? The Industrial Revolution over here was a slow, long-drawn out process; over there it was faster, but slightly later in history. Yes, British manufacturers did hide some technological secrets, but shared others too - France's ironworking industry was built upon British technology. For that matter, why hasn't Andy mentioned ironworking? Iron was contemporaneous to cotton, and the Industrial Revolution would never have happened without it. Can't have factories without first having foundries! Andy's sop to the non-Anglophonic world is badly wrong. Belgium didn't even exist as a country until 1830, and pinning specific dates for French and German industrialisation is just stupid. What benchmarks would we use? The establishment of a factory? Manufactories already existed. So did canals. So dd most of the other paraphernalia of Victorian industry. Industrialisation was not a qualitative phenomenon, it was quantitative - not totally new things, but simply more of existing things. Come on, Andy! What's wrong with you?!|
|In Egypt, modernization was attempted by Ottoman ruler Muhammad Ali Pasha (1769-1849) and his grandson Ismail. Muhammad Ali Pasha forced farmers to leave their farms and work on commercial plantations he established to export cotton and other crops to Europe. But in the end, his “reforms” resulted in a huge Egyptian debt to European countries, especially England. In Russia, industrialization was encouraged by the completion of the trans-Siberian railroad in 1904, connecting Russian to China and Japan. Japan was the only Asian country to successfully industrialize. Under Meiji rule, the government invited foreigners to teach industrialization principles. Businesses were sponsored and controlled by the government, and, when established, were then sold to private individuals.||Oh great, we're back in Egypt. Note Andy's oblique bitchiness about state intervention, and has a quick snipe at the British (not "English", you cretin!!). All of a sudden we leave the coffeehouses of 1860s Cairo and find ourselves ordering caviar on the Trans-Siberian Railway c.1904, before arriving in 1870s Tokyo. Ugh. I'm so confused. For the record, Russian industrialisation was even more ad hoc than in Britain, and by 1914 Russia was a deeply divided society caught between modern industrialism and medieval agrarianism. In Japan, industrialisation was even harsher than in Britain, with Japanese cities even dirtier and more overcrowded than the slums of Birmingham and Glasgow. But it did transform Japan into an urbanised, Westernised, industrial state - at a high price.|
|There were two key aspects to the industrial revolution: technological and culture. In technology, the industrial revolution began using iron and steel as basic resources and converted to energy sources such as electricity, oil and the steam engine. Transportation benefited from the steam engine (invented by James Watt in the 1770s) and later the car and airplane (invented by the Wright Brothers in 1903), while communication benefited from the telegraph (invented by Samuel Morse in 1837) and (later) the telephone (invented by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876) and the radio (invented in 1895). New machines such as the power loom and spinning jenny enabled mass production, and factories arose to divide labor and permit specialization. Increase application of science to industry helped enormously.||
What? What's this crap? Dammit, Andy! Notice how he mentions technology and culture, but only discusses the former. This is all over the place, and is just ridiculous.
Right, the (early British) Industrial Revolution in a nutshell:
|Other factors also caused industrialization. As farming techniques improved, each farm could obtain better yield or output from their land, and there was less of a need for so many farmers. A few farmers benefited from “economies of scale,” which is when something can be doing more efficiently on a larger scale, like when a large store like Wal-Mart provides cheaper goods than a small store can. In the early 1700s, there was an “enclosure movement” whereby wealthy farmers bought land from small farmers, then benefited from economies of scale in farming huge tracts of land. The enclosure movement led to improved crop production, such as the rotation of crops. People began moving to cities, where they could more easily work in factories than on farmland. In England, population growth caused former farmers or children of farmers to migrate from southeastern England to the northwest, where factories were being built.||Now we've pogo-sticked ("stuck"?) back from 1895 to c.1750. Andy tries to explain the Enclosure Act by mentioning Wal-Mart. Great work, Andy. At least the rest of this paragraph bears sufficient similarity to reality to let it pass. Barely.|
|England, the land of free enterprise and Adam Smith, had the perfect economic climate for the industrial revolution. England had all of the necessary “factors of production” (a term for the resources of an economy: land, labor, capital and entrepreneurship) to become an industrialized economy. There was plenty of money or capital to invest in new factories. There were many entrepreneurs hoping to profit from new businesses. There was sufficient land and natural resources, with the colonies of England providing raw materials as needed. And there was also adequate labor for the factories: the former small farmers. Most of all, there was a world of customers around the world wanting to buy the manufactured goods, and England’s merchant navy traded with the entire world.||Ooh, Andy cuts us some slack. Note his tacit praise of the British! Careful, Andy. Remember, we're the capital of atheism! According to Conservapedia, at least. His latent lust for geographical determinism returns after a long absence since Lecture Three, and he delicately skips over the fact that, as historian Eric Williams so aptly demonstrated, Britain's investment capital was built on the whipped backs of Caribbean slaves. No mention of the various Navigation Acts, which gave British merchant shipping a significant fiscal advantage over foreign rivals. Really, Andy. There are childrens' websites which have this information.|
|Other countries lacked some of these factors of production, and it took decades or even a century to industrialize. Historians claim that some countries, like Austria-Hungary and Spain, lacked the waterways needed by factories, or had too much hilly terrain. But the real reason other countries did not industrialize as quickly as England and the United States is simple: the other countries did not respect free enterprise and the teachings of Adam Smith. Industrialization depends on capitalism, free enterprise, and the benefits of competition. In the United States, industrialization was enhanced by the structure of an entity known as the “corporation”, whereby investors provide capital without taking on risks any greater than the amount of their investment.||Well in fairness Andy, a lot more than terrain is needed for industry. Politics, society, and economy are infinitely more important. Britain had these in spades - a stable political situation, a growing pool of people moving to the cities, and the profits from centuries of slave economics in the New World. No other European country had all three. Points off for again trying to piggyback America onto the British, and for treating Adam Smith as some sort of prophet. Oh, and a few more for implying that corporations are an American invention. The fourteenth-century Venetians had corporations, Andy. There was a world before America, y'know...|
|Additional factors contributed to the industrial revolution. Land declined as the major source of wealth, and more people could acquire different forms of wealth, such as cash, stocks, bonds or even intellectual property like books, music and paintings. Man felt more confidence in controlling natural resources like oil and gas fields, and enjoyed exploiting nature for profit. Political changes adapted to these social changes, and nations began to look to factories (which can make weapons) as the source of power.||Hmm. Andy's mostly right here. At least in the first two sentences. What a shame, then, that in the third sentence Andy shoves his head right back up his arse. Oil and gas fields weren't exactly important to eighteenth-century mill owners, nor even to nineteenth-century manufacturers. As for his claim that people "enjoyed exploiting nature for profit", Andrew Schlafly can go fuck himself. Seriously. It's that sort of attitude which is buggering up our one and only planet - and as usual, it ain't the rich twats who suffer, but the people at the bottom. This little snippet combines psychological projection, historical inaccuracy, and piss-brained Republican bullshit. What a hat-trick. Oh, and it's anti-Christian. In Genesis 2:15, God commands Adam to maintain the Earth, not pillage it for profit. A few more Satanic arse-rapings with a pineapple for you, Andy. But unfortunately, the rest of us may well be left wallowing in ecological devastation, because of your sort. Thanks for that. Can someone close to New Jersey please go and slap Andrew Schlafly in the face? Hard. Very hard. It would make a lot of people happy.|
|If you are a businessman or investor, then you love the industrial revolution because it enables you to make money without being a farmer, and gives you access to all sorts of goods and products that might not otherwise be available, such as computers. But some people, like Thomas Jefferson, felt that a farming lifestyle was important to the family unit and overall peace and well-being in society. The industrial revolution did damage families and created a stressful lifestyle that exists today, such as commuting to work.||What the hell is this? It's written in present tense, so we can only presume that Andy is writing some sort of polemic to people c.1840. One which is as riddled with shit-for-brains Republican propaganda as any poorly-Xeroxed Tea Bagger pamphlet. Note his implication that late-eighteenth century cotton mills gave us computers. He doesn't even mention the Second Industrial Revolution of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, when cotton, coal, and water were replaced by steam, steel, and science. Finally, he ends by whingeing about the daily commute. He did the same back in Lecture Five. Andy apparently really, really dislikes the concept of commuting; but seeing as he doesn't appear to actually have a job, it's not clear why he harbours such a grudge. Probably because interacting with the non-Conservapedian world makes him cry. Tosser.|
|Global effects of the industrial revolution included the growth of European nations in wealth and power and the increase of trade among nations. Areas of the world participating in trade and industrialization grew closer together, and global interaction increased. However, nations that resisted industrialization became increasingly isolated. Colonization continued, with Japan joining Europe in the conquest of territories to obtain raw materials. As aforementioned, the middle class increased and more people became interested in politics, which led to reforms and new policies.||Mostly true, for once. Industry gave Europeans the technology, the money, the medicines, the populations, and the motive, to take over the world. Trade links grew exponentially, as the ancien regime faded into obscurity in the face of hissing steam engines, hooting factory sirens, and revolutionary rumblings from the oppressed populations of European cities. Nations which did not industrialise were indeed left behind. European and American commerce with Africans, Asians, and Native Americans led to colonisation; South America became an "informal colony" of the British; China quickly fell from the world's most powerful Empire to a patchwork of squabbling, impoverished city-states wracked by civil wars and Western invasions (more about that in the next Lecture); and Japan and Russia struggled agaisnt each other, themselves, and the outside world in the race to industrialise before they suffered the same fate. The impact of the Industrial Revolution on the non-white world can be summarised by the three "C"s - commerce, colonisation, and Christianity. Those legacies still haunt us today, and will for decades to come.|
|Initially there were many negative domestic effects of the industrial revolution. Poor working conditions existed for factory workers: factories were dirty and dangerous places to work and wages were low and hours were long. But these initial problems among workers were lessened by the industrial reformation, by which quality and standards of living were greatly improved. A wide range of products, which previously would have been impossible to attain, were now cheaply produced and available to the average citizen. Real income—the actual purchasing power of money—greatly increased: people were able to buy much more with their money. The middle class composed of shopkeepers, factory owners, civil servants and merchants grew greatly.||
Andy is right that the Industrial Revolution was terrible for the workers. Eighteen hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Paltry wages which would barely buy a loaf a day. Shitty, rat-infested, jerry-built slum houses in which a single room would house several families, and a single outdoor toilet would serve dozens. Apocalyptic child mortality, the constant threat of layoffs, chronic alcoholism, rampant crime, horrific diseases, and in the worst cities of the 1840s, a life expectancy of fifteen years old. The average worker, for Andy's information, could not afford the things they manufactured; and even if they could, their miserable wages inevitably went on rot-gut gin in a desperate attempt to drown out the crying children, the growling stomachs, and the factory whistles.Nice.
|However, many other problems arose. Child labor increased and many families lived in crowded “tenements”, or apartments, which were unsanitary and often burned down in fires. Urbanization—or the development and movement of people to cities—increased so rapidly that slums arose, garbage and sewage (there were no sewers) filled the streets and epidemics spread quickly. Authors such as Charles Dickens in England and Victor Hugo in France wrote about the negative effects of industrialization. In the U.S., the Confederate states bragged that slaves were treated better than northern factory workers.||The nineteenth century saw the passage of many laws designed to regulate labour and improve the lot of the people, but nobody paid any attention. The Confederates did indeed boast that slaves had better lives, and the depressing thing is that they were right. The slaves had no freedom, but they had food on the table. Urban proles had freedom, but freedom doesn't fill your stomach. Not a pretty society. Don't be fooled by these cutesy Hollywood depictions of the 1800s. Life then was awful, for everyone. Except the rich, of course. You can see why political revolutions were so fierce, and so popular.|
|In response to many social problems, some insisted that government should control the economy. Progressive taxation to redistribute wealth evenly among all citizens arose, and socialism became popular as a result of the industrial revolution. But many others believed it was the responsibility of Christians, not the government, to care for the poor. The social problems of industrialization inspired Christians to take action, especially in America and England. Charles Spurgeon was a minister who attracted huge crowds in London and taught that faith without works is dead. He urged Christians to take action and help the poor. He participated in the establishment of Stockwell Orphanage in England in 1867. In Germany, the Inner Mission was established by Johann H. Wichern. The Red Cross society was founded in Switzerland by Jean Henri Dunant, and was used in America during the Civil War. In Bristol, England, George Mueller spent his life working to care for youth delinquents, orphans, and anyone poor and needy. The YMCA (Young Men’s Christian Association), originally founded as a place for Bible study and prayer in England in 1844, found enormous popularity and spread to America. In the 1860s, William and Catherine Booth founded the Salvation Army to provide food, clothing and shelter to the poor and homeless and spread the Gospel. Many of these Christian institutions continue to exist today.||
Is Andy praising socialism? Dear me. What would Sarah Palin say?
Andy's self-righteous Christian insertion here is all wrong. Unsurprisingly. It is true that throughout the nineteenth century, Christians did try to improve conditions (remember that real Christians - those who actually follow Jesus' teachings - are decent people. Regrettably they are, and always have been, very few. But still let's not confuse real Christians with the hordes of Fundafascists). Much of this was due to middle-class fears of crimewaves and moral decay in the cities; hence European cities are dotted with ugly Victorian churches, as the evangelists of the nineteenth-century sought to impose their version of morality onto the desperately unhappy urban-dwellers of Industrial Europe. Christian charities did indeed do much, but let's ignore Andy's piss-brained insertion about Christian voluntary charity doing more than the State. That has never worked, and if Andy doesn't believe that, he should take a stroll through any downtown urban desert. And anyway, what happened to the Fundafascist principle that salvation is not through works, but through faith alone? According to them, Republican Jesus doesn't give a rat's ass about your actions, and indeed encourages you to be a greedy, selfish, bigoted, condescending wanker; as grace is through faith alone. Shot yourself in the foot there, Andy.Well, the shift has finally ended. What a depressing place to leave. We started off with such high hopes when we shouldered our muskets and clambered atop the revolutionary barricades; and now here we are, brutalised and miserable, just waiting for it all to end. It's a microcosm of the nineteenth century! Andy is rather good at this (he did it in Lecture Four, too); structuring his verbal diarrhoea in such a way that it reflects the general misery of human history. Rather fitting. And now that the Age of Revolutions is over, we can brush ourselves down, clear our heads of the disconnected, asinine crap and pissy reactionary propaganda to which we have been exposed, and seize our opportunity to escape. We're going to grab the first ship out of this hellhole and sail for the promise of better things, in Andy's lecture on the colonies. But like the migrants of yesteryear, don't get your hopes up. The grass is never greener - and nowhere is this more true, than in the world of Conservapedia...