To What Extent Was the Growth of Chartism the Most Significant Development in the Popular Protest in the Period 1815-1848?

Topics: Poor Law, Reform Act 1832, Chartism Pages: 3 (912 words) Published: May 1, 2013
To what extent was the growth of Chartism the most significant development in the popular protest in the period 1815-1848? I think that Chartism was the least significant development in the popular protest period 1815-1848 because they did not achieve any reform until after the Chartist movement had ended by 1849. This was mainly due to the fact they had so many diverse aims and members which led to their weakness, they were not united under a single aim like other groups such as the Anti-Corn Law League which led to them trying too much in a short space of time being labelled as the ‘Umbrella movement’. I think that the Anti-Corn Law League was the most significant development in the popular protest in the period 1815-1848 because they achieved what they set out to do, they achieved getting a repeal of the Corn Laws which was a step towards almost total free trade in Britain. They also ran a very successful campaign in which they used humanitarian and religious arguments as well as economic arguments. As well as these arguments, they also used working class agitation to put pressure on the government, they used things like the ‘Plug Plots’ to gain support from the government in trying to achieve their aims. To achieve these aims the ACLL used propaganda to gain support from people and their finance was important as they used this to gain power in government as they would use bribes to make ACLL elected as MP’s. Although, the ACLL resulted in the split of the Conservative party and eventually Peel’s resignation. Trade Unions was the next most significant development in popular protest because they had a growing number of members following the repeal of the combinations act in 1824. Following this repeal, there were attempts to set up national unions such as the NAPL or the GNTCU, although their lifespans were very short as most disbanded within a year, despite their short lifespans these national unions they were present at political protests. The NAPL were...
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