Modern World - History of Last 250 years

World transformations (1820-1870)

  • Both western europe and wealthy Asia (China) are similar
    • Scientific discoveries.
    • Strong economies.
    • Manufacturing.
    • Large population centres.
  • Western europe however has
    • Large trade network.
    • Access to resources in north and south america.
    • They break the malthusian trap using technology.

After 1820 Europe and Americas GDP start increasing dramatically and by 1870 they are dominant economies in the world, dwarfing Asia.

  • Wealth pouring into Western Europe, created a rich upper middle class, which valued education.
  • Number of universities and importance of them was growing.
  • Printing press enabled to publish knowledge and create communities of readers around such knowledge.
  • Industries, specially mining and shipping, provided opportunities to tinkerers, including financial sponsorship to solve problems faced by these industries.
  • A vast global network of trade also meant a global network of knowledge.
  • All this enabled Western Europe to lead technology discoveries.
Influence of Technology
  • With steam engines, rail road, and telegraph, population demographic started showing significant changes.
  • Due to rail road, it was possible to transport labour and goods inland without relying on rivers.
  • This opened up vast areas of north america, australia to farming.
  • Steam boats also meant the transportation of goods and labour over water was much more cost effective.
  • Western Europe, North America, Australia grew rapidly.
  • Spread of Christiantiy to Asia, Latin America and Africa.
  • Due to protectionism in England, India loses its textile manufacturing industry.
Islamic world
  • Wahabism takes root in Arabia, winning some land.
  • Muslim brotherhoods are formed.
  • Ottoman empire defeats Egypt and keeps control of the empire.
  • Safavids in Iran are defeated with a new dynasty.
  • Islam starts spreading into Africa, specially West Africa.
  • Europeans are restricted to coastal areas of Africa, due to diseases affecting them.
  • Suez canal is opened.
  • Russian empires expands to pacific ocean and Alaska, is now threatning to expand to North America
Pacific World and Far East
  • America expands out to the pacific coast, blocks way for any other european power to enter North America.
  • Europeans start expanding into the southeast Asian islands and pacific islands.
  • Growth in Australia makes expansion into the near by regions possible and profitable.
  • China loses Opium wars giving footholds to British in China.
  • Japan opens up trade with North America.
  • Indonesia, malaysia are increasingly influenced by Muslim brotherhoods.