The Struggle for Mastery in Germany 1779-1850

Overview

This book attempts to combine geopolitics, modernization theory and the primacy of foreign policy to provide a fresh perspective on the struggle for mastery in Germany before 1850. Any form of rigid determinism is eschewed; the outcome of this contest was still relatively open in 1780. Nevertheless, the book shows why after the upheavals--domestic and internal--of the revolutionary period, and the geopolitical revolution of 1815, Prussia and not Austria was on the verge of winning the struggle for mastery by ...
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Overview

This book attempts to combine geopolitics, modernization theory and the primacy of foreign policy to provide a fresh perspective on the struggle for mastery in Germany before 1850. Any form of rigid determinism is eschewed; the outcome of this contest was still relatively open in 1780. Nevertheless, the book shows why after the upheavals--domestic and internal--of the revolutionary period, and the geopolitical revolution of 1815, Prussia and not Austria was on the verge of winning the struggle for mastery by mid-century. At every decisive stage along the way, it was Prussia rather than Austria or the "Third Germany" which showed itself capable of socio-economic and (partial) political modernization in order to adapt to external pressures and opportunities.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Analyzes a crucial period in European history, taking a quasi-Weberian approach centered on politics, systems of social domination, and administration. Focus is on the larger and middling German states such as Prussia, Austria, Bavaria, Baden, Saxony, and Wurttemberg, as well as the broader commonwealth of the Reich and the German Confederation after 1815. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312213107
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 10/15/1998
  • Series: European History in Perspective Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 252
  • Product dimensions: 5.46 (w) x 8.51 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Brendan Simms is Fellow and Director of Studies in History, Peterhouse, at Cambridge University.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Maps
1 Introduction: Geopolitics, Modernization Theory and the Primacy of Foreign Policy 1
2 Germany Before the French Invasion, 1779-92 7
The Old Reich, 1777-92: Polyocracy, Stasis and Renewal 7
Deference, Deviance, and Defiance: German Society on the Threshold of Modernity 14
Reform Absolutism: Modernization under the Primacy of Foreign Policy 23
Germany of the Cabinets: the Primacy of Foreign Policy, 1777-88 44
3 The Impact of the French Wars, 1792-1815 54
The Revolution of 1790 and its Consequences: the German States between Intervention and Accommodation 54
Why was there no Revolution in Germany? 67
The Reform Era: 'Offensive' Modernization 75
Nationalism and Liberation 90
4 The Old Politics and the New Nation, 1815-39 105
The Revolution of 1815 and its Consequences 105
Nationalism, Liberalism and the State: Restricted Modernization under the Primacy of Foreign Policy 117
A New Society? Social and Economic Development after 1815 141
5 The State versus the Nation, 1839-50 157
The Breakthrough of the Nation and the Crisis of the State, 1839-46 157
The Defeat of the Nation and the Triumph of the State, 1846-50 168
6 Conclusion 195
Notes and References 202
Bibliographical Essay 229
Index 238
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