6.7 Intellectual Developments from 1815-1914

3 min readmay 12, 2020

Sharii Liang

Sharii Liang

AP European History 🇪🇺

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The 19th century is often regarded as the “Age of -Isms” and for good reason. During this century, many political ideologies appeared and had -isms at the end. The main political ones were conservatism, nationalism, liberalism, socialism, and feminism. This section talks about everything after conservatism. The last political -ism that arose during this time was feminism. It believed in universal suffrage for both men and women as well as natural rights for both men and women. 🗳️ This political movement emerged from rising protests for universal male suffrage and the cult of domesticity enforcing traditional gender roles. 🤰

The Liberals

As conservatism slowly, but surely, began collapsing, more and more liberal movements emerged. They emphasized problems with voting rights, the social hierarchy, economic stratification, and an overbearing government. Multiple groups arose to raise awareness of these issues and change the status quo, but they all had different views on how the problems should be solved.

Types of Liberals

The general liberal was anyone who went outside of the status quo. They were often considered radicals, but liberal was also a group as well. The Liberals believed in more economic freedom as well as some moderate political reform. 💸 They believed in individuality and natural rights. Liberalism was often supported by the bourgeoisie, not the working class.
Nationalism transcended social classes, unlike liberalism. Nationalists believed in uniting people of similar culture and being extremely proud of one’s own culture. This ideology was especially prominent in the German and Italian states who were trying to unify themselves and form independent nations.
Socialism also emerged during this time period, but it appealed to the proletariat much more than the bourgeoisie. They prized equality and fairness above all else and believed in working together which differs from liberalism’s belief in individuality. ⚖️ Despite how similar socialism is to liberalism, the two ideologies disliked each other quite a bit.

Advocates, Their Wishes, and -Isms They Like


Political Party


John Stuart Mill & Jeremy Bentham
Economic freedom, individual rights, and utilitarianism (governments should do whatever provides the most pleasure for the largest amount of people)
Achieve universal male suffrage (working class males demanding rights)
Flora Tristan
Advocated women’s rights and feminism (progression of female rights is directly influenced by the progress of the working class)
Robert Owen
Utopian Socialism
Tried to improve working conditions for his factory workers and believed in cooperation, not competition (created a cooperative society called New Lanark)
Henri de Saint-Simon
Utopian Socialism
Argued that socialism was necessary for industrial development and that the workers should be in charge of production
Friedrich Engels & Karl Marx
History is just a cycle of bourgeoisie and proletariat conflict. The working class needs to rise up and take over the means of production.
Clara Zetkin
A leader of socialist women who educated women to get them politically involved
Georges Sorel
Believed Marxism cannot work and supported violence as a means of defense or in revolts
Mikhail Bakunin
Founder of collectivist anarchism (abolition of both state and private ownership)
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