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Lecture 6

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Department
History
Course
HIST 2040
Professor
William Cormack
Semester
Fall

Description
th The Illusions of Limited War in the 19 Century I POST-NAPOLEONIC RESTRAINTS ON WAR • European Congress System  After Napoleon’s defeat, allies held Congress of Vienna to determine peace settlement  Napoleon’s escape in 1815 made powers more determined to meet whenever peace was threatened  System of congresses, “Concert of Europe”, had only limited value as check on war • Fear of Revolutions  Monarchs & upper classes feared war could provoke revolution  Despite efforts to suppress liberal & national movements, political upheaval not easily checked  Unrest of proletariat did not provoke war in first half of 19 century • Liberalism  Liberals saw war as opposed to the social & economic policies they advocated  Liberalism, opposed to reactionary regimes, was also check on war II CONFIRMATION OF TRADITIONAL MILITARY SYSTEMS • Retreat from Conscription  After 1815 most European states discarded national conscript armies & returned to regular standing armies  British army commanded by upper classes, soldiers enlist voluntarily: social structure identical to th 18 -century army  France renounced conscription & reduced army’s size  Russia retained conscription & huge army, but backward economy & society undermined military strength  Prussia maintained conscription, but also democratic militia, Landwehr, which was kept separate  Aristocratic domination of officer corps was preserved • Revolutions of 1848  Military establishments were able to crush uprisings  After revolutions’ failure, possibility of overturning existing rulers seemed remote  But international problems diverted political energy into nationalist channels and toward war III LIMITED WARS IN THE MID-19TH CENTURY • Crimean War (1853-56)  Fought in Crimea against Russia by alliance of Britain, France, Piedmont & Turkey  War was limited  Allies besieged Sevastopol, far from their bases, but was also distant from heart of Russian empire  Crimean War exposed weakness of professional armies: badly commanded & poorly supplied  Signs of change during war  Florence Nightingale pioneered nursing care  William Howard Russell sent detailed reports by telegraph to London Times • Italian War of Liberation (1859)  Piedmont’s objective to liberate Italy from Austrian rule; needed aid from Napoleon III  War limited: France withdrew after Battle of Solferino  Signs of change: French victory reflected new artillery & rifles IV ATTEMPTS TO LIMIT CONFLICT • International Conventions  Limited wars showed that liberal ideology, combined with nationalism, could work for war instead of peace  Stimulated efforts to curb war through international conventions  Henri Dunant helped establish Red Cross  In 1864, 26 nations signed Geneva Convention regarding wounded, POWs & hospitals  Idea that conduct in war subject to law dated back to old notions of “just” and “unjust” wars th  Laws of war which gained acceptance in 19 century were designed to moderate war’s impact on society  Efforts to establish code of conduct for war at sea • Hague Conferences (1899, 1907)  Tsar Nicholas II proposed to limit armaments, mitigate horrors of war, & provide system to settle disputes  Hague Conferences banned some weapons, but little support for arms limitations  Established international court, but recourse optional • Failure to Limit War  National sovereignty thwarted 19 -century efforts to limit or abolish war through international law  Socialists preached pacifism & opposed “imperialist war” on principle, but supported governments when war declared in 1914  Public opposition to war shallow NAMES FROM THE LECTURE: • Congress of Vienna • Concert of Europe • Carbonari • Proletariat • Landwehr • Sebastopol • Charge of the Light Brigade • Napoleon III • Florence Nightingale • William Howard Russell • Piedmont • Battle of Solferino (1859) • Henri Dunant • Red Cross • Ivan S. Bloch Towards Total War I INDUSTRIALIZATION OF WAR • Steel & Artillery  Of changes associated with Industrial Revolution, those in iron industry most important for military purposes  Coke (almost pure carbon) replaced charcoal in smelting iron  Henry Cort patented ‘puddling’ & ‘rolling’ in iron production  In 1856 Henry Bessemer developed converter to produce large quantities of steel cheapl
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