Early Modern Period

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1450-1750
Early Modern Period

Major Developments

I. Questions of Periodization
A. Major points
1. Shift in power to the West
a. Rise of the West with fall of China and India creates imbalance in power that favors Europeans for next 200 years
2. World becomes smaller – almost all civilizations touched by trade 3. New Empires – Spain, Portugal, England, France, Netherlands, Ottoman, Russian, Mughal, Ming 4. Age of Gunpowder
B. Changes at end of Postclassical Era
1. Independent societies (Aztecs, Incas) falling apart
2. Arab power declining
3. New invasions – Mongols
4. Ottoman Empire gains power
a. Europeans threatened by new force to East
5. Chinese flirt with trade, but Ming bureaucrats pull back
6. Europe enters age of exploration
C. Western Europe
1. Unusual agricultural civilization
2. New view of family – nuclear
a. Love toward spouse
b. Affection toward children
3. Return to rational thought
4. Stable political structures
a. Absolute monarchy
b. Parliamentary monarchies
5. Religious reformers
a. Reform the Church
b. Protestant Reformation
D. Effects of Global Economy
1. By 1750, almost everyone knows everyone
2. Food exchange – new staple crops to Africa (corn), Europe (potato)
3. Unequal relationships – master, slave, owners, workforce
4. Slaves and serfs
5. Diseases
E. Themes
1. Declining emphasis of nomads
2. Direct relationships – ambassadors replace intermediaries (Nomads)
3. Gender relations remain patriarchal
4. Labor relations change – master/slave – abuse of indigenous peoples
5. A few commercial leaders get rich
6. Environmental changes
a. food, animal, disease exhange
7. Native vegetation
a. Deforestation for staple crops
b. Grazing land for newly introduced beasts of burden
8. Centralization of governments
a. Modern government
1. bureaucracies
2. agencies
3. admiralties
4. treasuries...
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