The Social & Political Ideas of Some Representative Thinkers of the Revolutionary Era: A Series of Lectures Delivered at King's College, University of London, during the Session 1929-30

The Social & Political Ideas of Some Representative Thinkers of the Revolutionary Era: A Series of Lectures Delivered at King's College, University of London, during the Session 1929-30

The Social & Political Ideas of Some Representative Thinkers of the Revolutionary Era: A Series of Lectures Delivered at King's College, University of London, during the Session 1929-30

The Social & Political Ideas of Some Representative Thinkers of the Revolutionary Era: A Series of Lectures Delivered at King's College, University of London, during the Session 1929-30

Excerpt

The "Revolutionary Era" covered by this series of studies is broadly the sixty years of the reign of George III(1760-1820). This period, we may venture to say, saw greater changes in the European system than any other period of equal length, except that of the sixty years inaugurated by the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1930). Within its compass it included no fewer than three movements so subversive of old institutions and so creative of new ones that each of them has justifiably been termed a 'revolution.' First in order of time came the American Revolution, which shattered the first British Empire, brought Britain herself almost to the verge of destruction, and terminated for ever the dominance of the old colonial system of the administration of dependencies. Next gradually developed the less spectacular but even more transformative Industrial Revolution in England, a movement which slowly but inexorably converted Great Britain from a country primarily agricultural into a country primarily industrial; a movement, too, which by concentrating masses of artisans in factories and factory towns did much to hasten the triumph of democracy. Finally occurred the French Revolution, the most tremendous social and political upheaval between the dissolution of Christendom in the sixteenth-century Reformation and the overthrow of the three Kaiserdoms in the world-crisis of 1914-18.

The three revolutions that came about in the reign of George III were, of course, not unconnected with one another. It was, for example, widely recognised at the time, and it has been even more clearly evident to later generations, that the American colonists in resisting the claims of the Georgian Governments were fighting the battles of English freedom. The political agitations that accompanied the Industrial Revolution were to no small extent inspired by the same idea, and even organised by the same men, as became prominent in the . . .

Author Advanced search

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.