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A century of peace and progress was enjoyed in Europe which was then the center of the known world. This century saw the remarkable flowering of world civilization, the expansion of trade and industry, the democratization of society, and the blossoming of the arts and sciences.
We will study in this report on how the most civilized nations at the time made the great strides in social progress, scientific studies, arts and letters, and movements for world peace. The benefits from these developments have been felt even until today.
Without the fears brought by war or rumors of war, people turned their thoughts and energy to different kind of things such as the scientific progress, the progress in arts and letters, the social progress, and the movement for world peace.
Social progress is the idea that societies can or do improve in terms of their social, political, and economic structures. This was brought to three different subtopics; Growth of Humanitarianism, Emancipation of Women, and the Popular Education and Higher Learning.
The first subtopic tells us that with the awakening of man’s humanitarian spirit in the 19th century, the barbaric practices and cruel customs of former centuries were abolished. As early as 1815, the Congress of Vienna agreed to abolish the inhuman slave trade which had long desolated Africa and degraded Europe and America, and a lot more countries emancipated slavery. The growing humanitarian spirit of the 19th century was also manifested in the treatment of criminals and the unfortunate. Better treatment of prisoners in British jails was campaigned. Juvenile courts and reformatories were established for young offenders. Asylums for insane persons, poor houses for beggars, and schools for the deaf, dumb and blind were established in European countries. Even animals received their share of attention. Various
humanitarian organizations were established, such as the Salvation Army, founded in 1880 by William Booth, the YMCA ( Young Men’s Christian Association), and the International Red Cross organization.
Emancipation of Women is the second subtopic of social progress. Prior to the 19 century, a woman’s position in European society was the same as that in the Middle Ages. A mere housewife and mother, without formal education and civil and political rights were the treatment of women before. With the French revolution, the fields of business, politics, and education were gradually opened to women. Suffrage was granted to women. In 1893, Australian and New Zealand extended the right to vote to women, being the first countries in the world to grant women suffrage. The first country in Europe to grant women suffrage was Norway (1907). In the United States, the women acquired the right of suffrage in 1920.
The last subtopic is the Popular Education and Higher Learning. The rise of democracy led to the establishment of public schools. “Next to Bread”, said Danton, “education is the first need of the people”. In 19th century, England, Prussia, France, Japan and other nations established public elementary schools for the masses. Above the elementary school system was establish a secondary schools, which prepared young people for university education. This school was called lyceum in France, gymnasium in Germany, and academy, highschool or middle school in other countries. A great contribution to education was the kindergarten, which was conceived by Friedrich Froebel, a German educator. He believe that a preschool age child or a child below 7 years should be given special training to develop his intellectual, spiritual, and physical faculties. The first kindergarten was established in Prussia. It was really the United States which first gave poor students and women the opportunities to obtain a university education.
The second topic is the Scientific Progress. The 19th century was marked by scientific achievements. In no other period of world history did mankind make such extraordinary advances in the natural sciences. This is also brought to different subtopics, first is the Geology. Charles Lyell, an English geologist, revolutionized the geological science with his uniformitarian theory. He contended that the earth’s surface came into existence, not by means of the convulsions of nature, but as a result of slow and gradual changes through the ages.
Evolution is the next subtopic in the Scientific Progress which is the most sensational scientific theory of the century and states that life is the result of gradual development through successive forms. The one who popularized the evolution theory was the English scientist Charles Darwin in his book, The Origin of the Species by Means of natural Selection (1859). Hence, the evolution theory is often called “Darwinism.” Chemistry is also one of the subtopics which progressed during the early part of the 19th century after the discovery by John Dalton that matter is composed of minute atoms. A lot of chemists contributed a large numbers of inventions such as Joseph Louis Gay- Lussac, Friedrich Wohler and Justus von Liebig, Dmitri Mendeleev, and Louis Pasteur who discovered the sterilization by boiling to kill the germs. Another subtopic is Physics, during the 19th century and early part of the 20th century contributed to human progress. This led to the discoveries of many things such as the electric battery, electric dynamo, electric light bulb, a new element which is radium, and many more. Albert Einstein, one of the world’s greatest scientific geniuses, revolutionized the science of physics. His theory of relativity gave man a new look into matter, time, space, and motion, which are related to one another. His scientific studies paved the way for nuclear science.
Medicine and Surgery were also revolutionized during the 19th century such as Elias Metchnikoff discovered the white blood corpuscles which fight germs, Robert Koch who discovered the germ tuberculosis, and Emil von Behring invented antitoxin against diphtheria. A great contribution to surgery was anesthesia. The antiseptic was first introduced in 1876 by Joseph Lister and X-ray which was discovered by Wilhelm von Roentgen. The last subtopic is the Exploration. The great geographical explorations of the 16th century were continued in the 19th century. The wild regions of the Amazon and Orinoco in South America were explored by a German scientist, Alexander von Humboldt. The “Dark Continent” and Tiber were also explored. The first attempts to explore the North and South Poles were made in the 19th century.
The third topic is the Progress in Arts and Letters which is also divided in five subtopics. First is the Literature which was blossomed during the era preceding World War I. In England, there was the Victorian Age in literature, whose firmament was star-studded with brilliant men of letters. Lord Alfred Tennyson was the poetic voice of this age. Robert Browning, Tennyson’s contemporary, was the foremost philosophical poet in English literature. French literature saw the decline of the Romantic Age and the rise of the Age of realism. Realism in literature is the style in which the writer portrays the hard facts of life without emotion or without romanticizing the story. The literature of the Italians was both nationalistic and
classical. Scandinavian nations also produced their great literature during the 19th and early part of 20th centuries. The 19th century also saw the glorious development of the Russian novel.
The second subtopic is the Philosophy. The 19th century saw the end of the classical and rationalist philosophies, and the rise of empiricism. Empiricism is the philosophy that truths can only be derived from concrete experience and scientific explanations, rather than from abstract reasoning or beliefs. According to this thinking, “To see is to believe, and to believe is to see.” Thus, man became more materialistic and self-centered. And philosophy became closely connected with science. Friedrich Nietzsche developed nihilism and the “superman” idea, which later influenced the mad ambition of Adolf Hitler. Finally, William James, the American philosopher championed the cause of pragmatism. History and the Social Science is the next subtopic. Historiography, or the writing of history, developed at the start of 19th century in harmony with the progressive spirit of the times. It became more scientific. Not only was it based on thorough researches in archives and other reliable sources of information, but it was also studied in the light of other subjects, notably geography, anthropology, ethnology, economics, political science, and ethics. Spectacular success of the natural sciences encouraged scholars to apply scientific techniques and principles to the study of man and society. The result was the birth of two new social sciences namely, psychology, the study of human behavior, and sociology, the study of man as a member of society. The greatest sensation in the new science of psychology was the psychoanalysis of Sigmund Freud, an Austrian physician. Sociology was founded by the French man Auguste Comte, who gave the social science its name. According to him, man and society are susceptible to scientific investigation.
The fourth subtopic is the Music. Though romantic in mood, the music of the 19th century was versatile. It expressed not only love of God, but also patriotism, joy, sorrow, and other emotions. Never had a century produced as many as music masters as did the 19th century. And the last subtopic is the Fine Arts. The three greatest sculptors of the 19th century were Canova (Italian), Thorwaldsen (Dane), and Rodin (French). Both Canova and Thorwaldsen specialized in classical sculpture while Rodin excelled in realistic sculpture. A new type of painting called “Impressionism” became popular in 19th century. As the name implied, the artists sought to give the impression of movement and beauty in the luminous color of their works. The architecture of the 19th century was characterized by the revival of Classical and
Gothic styles. Residential buildings in Europe and America were built along Classical lines, while the government buildings and churches were of Gothic styles.
The Movement for World Peace is the last but a very important topic in this report. To respect and nurture human rights with tolerance and understanding is one of the methods in achieving a world peace. This will alleviate poverty and hunger, and will help improve health, education, and any other living conditions of all people on earth.
In Early Advocates of World Peace, after the religious wars in Europe, King Henry IV of France advocated the notion called “Grand design” for the purpose of preserving world peace. In the 19th century, the peace movement was promoted by private benefactors. Alfred Nobel, the Swedish inventor of dynamite, left his fortune for the establishment of international prizes, one of which was for world peace. An American millionaire, Andrew Carnegie, gave millions of dollars as endowment for the abolition of war, “the foulest blot on our civilization”. The Hague Conference. The growth of international rivalries and militarism among civilized nations toward the end of the 19th century accentuated the need for preserving world peace. Alarmed by the ominous trend of the times, Czar Nicholas II of Russia invited the powers to meet in an international conference in order to discuss matters pertaining to the limitation of armaments and the maintenance of peace. In response to the czar’s appeal, the First Peace Conference was held in The Hague, Netherlands, from May 18 to July 29, 1899, attended by the 26 nations. This conference failed in its basic purpose to limit armaments because of the strong opposition of the German delegates. Nevertheless, it accomplished the following (1) the establishment of a permanent court of arbitration, composed of world jurists, to which nations were advised to go for the settlement of their disputes; (2) the codification of the laws to warfare; (3) the prohibition of the used of poison gas, “dumdum” bullets, and other destructive weapons of war; and (4) the adaption of the rules of the Geneva convention of 1864 pertaining to the treatment of wounded soldiers. The Second Peace Conference met in The Hague in 1907, upon the invitation of Czar Nicholas II of Russia and President Theodore Roosevelt of the United States. This time, it was attended by the delegates from 44 nations- 21 European, 19 American, and 4 Asian. The work of this conference was largely a repetition of the First Peace Conference.
In World History book, the author believes that the Industrial Revolution can be a Blessing or Curse for the people. According to her, since 19th century, our world has become more machine-oriented. There were many more discoveries and inventions new systems and new gadgets, that benefited mankind. The industrial revolution has been a great blessing to mankind. There is no doubt that machines and modern
products help to save lives, ease pain, make life more comfortable, faster and profitable for modern man.
However, it has also been something of a curse. In many ways people have become dehumanized and less caring with the use of modern machines. Human life and labor have become cheap as compared to the value of machines and tools. Daily and regular prayer, Bible study, good conversation and reading books have become lost in our modern world’s fascination with machines.
Some philosophers say our modern world has become as cold and dead as the machines we like to use. People are treated like machines and are not given the proper dignity and care they need as God’s special creation. Clearly, our world has yet to adjust to the changes brought by the 19th century Industrial Revolution.
On our own personal views based on what we have read and on our reference it impacted very much on the modern society in terms of literature, art, music and a lot more. Especially here in the Philippines like the use of bulb as a source of light giving care to the ill. If we will analyze more on the world we are living today, we are living with the contributions of western countries and if we will overlook on our society most of the inventions, trait`s and character we have especially in technology and terms of science are adapted from the other country.
For the reporter, the progress that was happened in our world brought a lot of things to the modern society. Nowadays, almost everything we’re dealing with has a concern to what happened in the past and most of these things were considered as our benefits from the progress of previous centuries such as 19th and 20th centuries.
Examples of these were the gadgets that most of the children were playing, the improved medical sciences, and any other products that we’re using in our daily activities. Medicine and Surgery were improved which saved a lot of people but if we will just reflect, most of our ancestors were healthier than the modern people or specifically speaking is us. People now are so dependent on the machines, we’re always associated on the machines for everything that we’re doing. A lot of children now are playing gadgets such as PSP, computers, cell phones and many more which I
think doesn’t improve their physical aspect. Because we’re always relying on the machines, we are lacking of exercise that can bring us many diseases such as heart and respiratory diseases.
The movement of world peace brought us a lot of good things. Due to the war that happened for the past centuries, more people were killed and bring fears for so many people. We will only overcome this by achieving peace for all nations. We know that there still war that happening in different countries but I can say that most of the nations have peace and we must be thankful for this.
IV. Significant Learning
Studying the century of progress and peace made me realized the importance of peace and the real essence of progress in our society. I learned that without peace, we will not achieve anything and we must start it in our own family. Could you imagine every family was always fighting each other, what will happen to their children? This will just bring fears for them or maybe, they will become a bad person. So we must always have a peace in our home in order for our society to have a world peace. Kitchen utensils help our mother to prepare foods, internet helps us in doing our assignments and watching television makes us relax. These are a few examples of modern machines that are really helpful for us and sometimes, we cannot work without these things. Nowadays people are so dependent on these things, especially for the students, instead of researching their assignments in the library, they prefer to surf in the internet because it is much easier and faster. And because of these machines, people became lazy in everything, they’re always relying on these things. We must be thankful for the progress that happened and are still happening in our world but we must know how to handle properly on these things. And a good example of this is not always doing recreational activities individually like watching television, playing PSP, and surfing the net, instead, we must spend a lot of times with our family by talking each other about what’s happening to each other. On the analysis report we also learned about where did all of these amazing art, literature and music came from, where did it started, and whom country we should be paying for.
As we all know, Filipinos are really fund of music, literature and art which I think these were adapted traits that we`ve got to these countries. We should be thankful to the countries who introduced these things to us and we must continue in improving our skills for the never-ending progress that is happening in our world.
Republic of the Philippines Central Luzon Doctor’s Hospital-Educational Institution Nursing Department San Pablo, Tarlac City
A WRITTEN ANALYSIS REPORT
A Century of Peace and Progress
In partial fulfillment of the requirements in Humanities 1: World civilization and Literature
Ramos, Lady Mae Bernadette
Christopher Ronn Pagco
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