As we concluded reading the Age of Empire, by Eric Hobsbawn we talked briefly about this concept of “revolting,” or “revolution,” if you will. As European powers continued to rise, so did the wars between them. These “fueds” between the countries obviously stirred up some controversy amongst the people living in them, sometimes sparking a “change of thought.” This “change of thought” or, as we more commonly know it, “revolution” wanted to bring about a social change, and looks at new ideas. People began to challenge just exactly why they believed in what they did!
In these last three chapters of Age of Empire, Hobsbawn talks about two important things: 1) the rise of science and 2) the “fall” of religion. As I talked about in my last post, nationalism was becoming more present in these countries – couple that with the fact that everyone was now being educated – religion was quickly slipping from first place to second. Individuals were now attempting to understand medical things, and new technology. With the understanding of science becoming more prevalent, this opened up an avenue for people to question religion – something many did not like. In my personal opinion, I think it’s good to question why you do what you do, say what you say, think what you think, and believe in what you believe.
One thing I would have loved for Hobsbawn to expound upon would have to be those who didn’t take hold to nationalism, and those who didn’t fall into this period of rise in science. What were their reactions to the changes happening around them? Do they eventually embrace what everyone else does, or do they hold their ground?