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Chapter 1- The Rise of Nationalism in Europe Interview Questions Answers

Question 1 : Write a note on:
a. Guiseppe Mazzini
b. Count Camillo de Cavour

Answer 1 :

 (a)
 During the 1830s, Giuseppe Mazzini had sought to put together a coherent programme for the unitary Italian Republic. He had also formed a secret society called ‘Young Italy’ for the dissemination of his goals.

(b)
1. Led the movement to unify Italy
2. He was neither a revolutionary nor a democrat.
3. Through a tactful diplomatic alliance engineered by Cavour, Sardini-Piedmont succeeded in defeating the Austrian forces in 1859.

Question 2 : Write a note on:
c. The Greek war of independence
d. Frankfurt parliament

Answer 2 :

(c)
1. Greece had been part of the Ottoman Empire since the fifteenth century. The growth of revolutionary nationalism in Europe sparked off a struggle for independence amongst the Greeks, which began in 1821.
2. Poets and artists lauded Greece as the cradle of European civilisation and mobilised public opinion to support its struggle against a Muslim empire.
3. Nationalists in Greece got support from other Greeks living in exile and also from many West Europeans, who had sympathies for ancient Greek culture.
4. Finally, the Treaty of Constantinople of 1832 recognised Greece as an independent nation.

(d)
1. It was an all-German National assembly formed by Middle-Class professionals, businessmen and prosperous Artisans belonging to different German regions.
2. It was convened on 18 May 1848.
3. It was disbanded on 31 May 1849 as it lost support.

Question 3 : Write a note on:
e. The role of women in nationalist struggles

Answer 3 :

(e)
1. Women of the liberal middle classes combined their demands for constitutionalism with national unification. They took advantage of the growing popular unrest to push their demands for the creation of a nation-state on parliamentary principles – a constitution, freedom of the press and freedom of association.
2. Women had formed their own political associations, founded newspapers and taken part in political meetings and demonstrations.

Question 4 : What steps did the French revolutionaries take to create a sense of collective identity among the French people?

Answer 4 :

1. The ideas of ‘La Patrie’ (the fatherland) and ‘Le Citoyen’ (the citizen) emphasised the notion of a united community enjoying equal rights under a constitution.
2. A new French flag, the tricolour, was chosen to replace the former royal standard.
3. New hymns were composed, oaths taken and martyrs commemorated, all in the name of the nation.
4. A centralised administrative system was put in place, and it formulated uniform laws for all citizens within its territory.
5. Internal customs duties and dues were abolished, and a uniform system of weights and measures was adopted.
6. Regional dialects were discouraged and French, as it was spoken and written in Paris, became the common language of the nation.
7. The revolutionaries further declared that it was the mission and the destiny of the French nation to liberate the peoples of Europe from despotism. In other words, to help other peoples of Europe to become nations.

Question 5 : Who were Marianne and Germania? What was the importance of the way in which they were portrayed?

Answer 5 :

Female allegories were invented by artists in the nineteenth century to represent the nation.
1. Marianne, a popular Christian name – underlined the idea of a people’s nation.
2. Her characteristics were drawn from those of Liberty and the Republic – the red cap, the tricolour, the cockade. Statues of Marianne were erected in public squares to remind the public of the national symbol of unity and to persuade them to identify with it.
3. The image of Marianne was marked on coins and stamps.
Germania became the allegory of the German nation. In visual representations, Germania wears a crown of oak leaves, as the German oak stands for heroism.

Question 6 : Briefly trace the process of German unification.

Answer 6 :

1. Nationalist sentiments were often mobilised by conservatives for promoting state power and achieving political domination over Europe. This can be observed in the process by which Germany and Italy came to be unified as nation-states.
2. Middle-class Germans tried to unite the different regions of German Confederation, but their plans were not materialised due to actions of large landowners called Junkers of Prussia. Three wars over seven years with Austria, Denmark and France ended in a Prussian victory. In Jan 1871, Prussian King William I was proclaimed German emperor.
3. Importance was given to modernising the currency, banking, legal and judicial systems in Germany.’

Question 7 : What changes did Napoleon introduce to make the administrative system more efficient in the territories ruled by him?

Answer 7 : The Civil Code of 1804 – usually known as the Napoleonic Code – did away with all the privileges based on birth, established equality before the law and secured the right to property. This Code was exported to the regions under French control. In the Dutch Republic, in Switzerland, in Italy and Germany, Napoleon simplified the administrative divisions, abolished the feudal system and freed peasants from serfdom and manorial dues. In the towns too, guild restrictions were removed. Transport and communication systems were improved. Peasants, artisans, workers and new businessmen enjoyed new-found freedom. Businessmen and small-scale producers of goods, in particular, began to realise that uniform law, standardised weights and measures, and a common national currency would facilitate the movement and exchange of goods and capital from one region to another.

Question 8 : Explain what is meant by the 1848 revolution of the liberals. What were the political, social and economic ideas supported by the liberals?

Answer 8 :

1. In the year 1848, parallel to the revolts of the poor, another revolution was happening underway.  Led by the educated middle classes,  the unemployed, the starving peasants and workers in many European countries experienced this revolution of the liberals. Events of February 1848 in France had brought about the abdication of the monarch and a republic based on universal male suffrage had been proclaimed.
2. In other parts of Europe where independent nation-states did not yet exist – such as Germany, Italy, Poland, the Austro-Hungarian Empire – men and women of the liberal middle classes combined their demands for constitutionalism with national unification.
3. They took advantage of the growing popular unrest to push their demands for the creation of a nation-state on parliamentary principles – a constitution, freedom of the press and freedom of association.
4. The issue of extending political rights to women was a controversial one within the liberal movement, in which large numbers of women had participated actively over the years. Women had formed their own political associations, founded newspapers and had taken part in political meetings and demonstrations.

Question 9 : Choose three examples to show the contribution of culture to the growth of nationalism in Europe.

Answer 9 :

Language:
Language played a very important role. After the Russian occupation, the Polish language was forced out of schools, and the Russian language was imposed everywhere. The Clergy in Poland began using language as a weapon of national resistance. Polish was used for Church gatherings and all religious instructions. The use of Polish came to be seen as a symbol of struggle against Russian dominance.
Romanticism:
It was a cultural movement which sought to develop a particular form of nationalist sentiment. Romantic artists and poets generally criticised the glorification of reason and science and focussed instead on emotions, intuition and mystic feelings. They tried to portray a common cultural past as the basis of a nation.
Folk poetry, folk dance, folk songs:
The true spirit of the nation was popularised through the above means. So collecting and recording these forms of folk culture was an essential part of nation-building.

Question 10 : Through a focus on any two countries, explain how nations developed over the nineteenth century.

Answer 10 :

Focus countries – Germany and Italy.
Germany
1. Nationalist sentiments were often mobilised by conservatives for promoting state power and achieving political domination over Europe. This can be observed in the process by which Germany and Italy came to be unified as nation-states.
2. Middle-class Germans tried to unite the different regions of German Confederation, but their plans were not materialised due to actions of large landowners called the ‘Junkers of Prussia’. Three wars over seven years with Austria, Denmark, and France ended in a Prussian victory. In Jan 1871, the Prussian King William I was proclaimed German emperor.
3. Importance was given to modernising the currency, banking, legal and judicial systems in Germany.
Italy
1. During the 1830s, Mazzini sought to unify Italy. He had formed a secret society called ‘Young Italy’, and It had failed. Hence, the responsibility fell on Sardinia-Piedmont under its ruler King Victor Emmanuel II, to unify Italian states through war.
2. Austrian forces were defeated in 1859. Apart from Sardinia-Piedmont, a large number of volunteers had joined the cause under the leadership of Giuseppe Garibaldi. In 1860, they marched to South Italy and managed to defeat Spanish rulers. In 1861, Victor Emmanuel II was proclaimed as the king of Italy.


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Chapter 1- The Rise of Nationalism in Europe Contributors

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