11 February 2015
Changes and Continuities Over Time in Europe from 1450-1900
The region of Western Europe has undergone many shifts in their political, economic, and social structures throughout the centuries. Through centuries of searching for their identity, Western Europe emerged as a world power with their unique cultural and economical identity. From the 1450s to the 1900s, the economic structures shifted from once based purely on bullion to an industrialized economy while their colonial and imperial systems continued to play a role in their economy; the cultural structures shifted from religious to scientific base while art remained an important part of the European culture.
The European economy experienced a major change in their structure from one that was entirely based on silver and gold bullion to one that revolved around mercantilism and industrialization. This shift, caused by the industrial revolution, helped Europe to become a dominant world power. In pre-industrial Europe, the world trade centered around the exchange of goods for bullion. In order to play a role in the world trade market, Europeans traded their bullion for goods such as coffee and spices with Asia. With the onset of the Industrial Revolution, European nations began to focus on the acquisition of raw materials that they could transform into finished products. These goods allowed Europe to become active members in the trade market instead of relying on bullion from South America. Industrial Europe became a world power in the global economy through their profits from their new tradable goods. This status created a new social order through the world of dependent nations that Europe relied on for raw materials while they relied on Europe for economic stability. These dependent nations- like India, Java, and the African colonies- became reliant on Europe education and their military to guarantee financial stability in the future.
Though the European...
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