European Civilization, 1648-1945 (HIST 202) Several reasons can be found to explain why Great Britain and the Netherlands did not follow the other major European powers of the seventeenth century in adopting absolutist rule. Chief among these were the presence of a relatively large middle class, with a vested interest in preserving independence from centralized authority, and national traditions of resistance dating from the English Civil War and the Dutch war for independence from Spain, respectively. In both countries anti-absolutism formed part of a sense of national identity, and was linked to popular anti-Catholicism. The officially Protestant Dutch, in particular, had a culture of decentralized mercantile activity far removed from the militarism and excess associated with the courts of Louis XIV and Frederick the Great. 00:00 - Chapter 1. Shared Character of the English and Dutch States: The Large Urban Middle Class 10:38 - Chapter 2. Anti-Absolutism in the Collective Consciousness: National Identity and Political Origins 18:50 - Chapter 3. Anti-Catholicism and Anti-Absolutism 26:33 - Chapter 4. The Canals of the Dutch Republic: A State Built around Sea Trade 40:43 - Chapter 5. Representations of Dutch Life in Painting: Emphasis on the Everyday Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses This course was recorded in Fall 2008.
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