NCERT Class 10 History The Rise of Nationalism in Europe

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The Rise Of Nationalism In Europe Class 10 History NCERT

Class 10 History students should refer to the following NCERT Book chapter The Rise Of Nationalism In Europe in standard 10. This NCERT Book for Grade 10 History will be very useful for exams and help you to score good marks

The Rise Of Nationalism In Europe NCERT Class 10

The Rise of Nationalism in Europe

In 1848, Frédéric Sorrieu, a French artist, prepared a series of four prints visualising his dream of a world made up of ‘democratic and social Republics’, as he called them. The first print (Fig. 1) of the series, shows the peoples of Europe and America – men and women of all ages and social classes – marching in a long train, and offering homage to the statue of Liberty as they pass by it. As you would recall, artists of the time of the French Revolution personified Liberty as a female figure – here you can recognise the torch of Enlightenment she bears in one hand and the Charter of the Rights of Man in the other.

On the earth in the foreground of the image lie the shattered remains of the symbols of absolutist institutions. In Sorrieu’s utopian vision, the peoples of the world are grouped as distinct nations, identified through their flags and national costume. Leading the procession, way past the statue of Liberty, are the United States and Switzerland, which by this time were already nation-states. France,  identifiable by the revolutionary tricolour, has just reached the statue.She is followed by the peoples of Germany, bearing the black, red and gold flag.

Interestingly, at the time when Sorrieu created this image, the German peoples did not yet exist as a united nation – the flag they carry is an expression of liberal hopes in 1848 to unify the numerous German-speaking principalities into a nation-state under a democratic constitution. Following the German peoples are the peoples of Austria, the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, Lombardy, Poland, England, Ireland, Hungary and Russia. From the heavens above, Christ, saints and angels gaze upon the scene. They have been used by the artist to symbolise fraternity among the nations of the world.

This chapter will deal with many of the issues visualised by Sorrieu in Fig. 1. During the nineteenth century, nationalism emerged as a force which brought about sweeping changes in the political and mental world of Europe. The end result of these changes was the emergence of the nation-state in place of the multi-national dynastic empires of Europe. The concept and practices of a modern state, in which a centralised power exercised sovereign control over a clearly defined territory, had been developing over a long period of time in Europe. But a nation-state was one in which the majority of its citizens, and not only its rulers, came to develop a sense of common identity and shared history or descent. This commonness did not exist from time immemorial; it was forged through struggles, through the actions of leaders and the common people. This chapter will look at the diverse processes through which nation-states and nationalism came into being in nineteenth-century Europe.

The French Revolution and the Idea of the Nation The first clear expression of nationalism came with the French Revolution in 1789. France, as you would remember, was a full-fledged territorial state in 1789 under the rule of an absolute monarch. The political and constitutional changes that came in the wake of the French Revolution led to the transfer of sovereignty from the monarchy to a body of French citizens. The revolution proclaimed that it was the people who would henceforth constitute the nation and shape its destiny.

From the very beginning, the French revolutionaries introduced various measures and practices that could create a sense of collective identity amongst the French people. 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. A new French flag, the tricolour, was chosen to replace the former royal standard. The Estates General was elected by the body of active citizens and renamed the National Assembly. New hymns were composed, oaths taken and martyrs commemorated, all in the name of the nation. A centralised administrative system was put in place and it formulated uniform laws for all citizens within its territory. Internal customs duties and dues were abolished and a uniform system of weights and measures was adopted.


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