Revolutions of 1848
The revolutions of 1848 occurred in almost every country of Europe. The revolutions left all of the countries involved wondering why it had happened and just exactly what it was that had happened. People were revolting against the extensive government control that dominated their lives. The people who determined the laws of a constitutional monarchy were virtually all nobles and upperclassmen. The people wanted to be represented equally so that they would not be treated unfairly concerning matters such as taxes, punishments, and employment. The revolutions of 1848 were not successful in the fact that nothing good came of them, but they were successful in the sense that some changes were made in favor of the revolutionists.
The goals of the revolutionaries of 1848 were to get better lower-class representation for the peasants. They were tired of being treated so poorly when they were the ones that supported the country the most of all classes. The first hint of a revolution being near was the period of famine that racked Europe in 1846. The prices of grain were driven up due to its dearth. The famine of Europe affected everyone, including the poor, workers, employers, and investors. Likewise, people all over the continent were crying out for a more democratic nation.
The people of Europe began to revolt, following the example set by the French Revolutionists and the revolts in Poland in 1846. They demanded freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, saying that both were inalienable rights of men. Parisians protested against their governments repressive acts. The people of Prussia were building barricades in Berlin as a way of protesting their government. There were protesters all over Europe trying to get away from repressive matters and unequal opportunities for employment and government offices. Very few of these issues were changed with all of the revolts. One thing that the revolts did create was the creation of a gap between the liberals and the radical democrats. They also showed that the European powers could not support the peace settlement of 1815 like they previously stated they would. All over Europe, the middle classes were giving in to the dominance of traditional aristocratic ideals. The bourgeoisie class in Germany gave in to the demands of the aristocracy in order to maintain peace. Any radicals who used violence to emphasize their views were killed or sent into exile. Almost all leaders involved with the side of the revolutionaries were decapitated, and no one else seemed fit to be capable of fulfilling the position. It seemed useless to rise against the state power, especially without organization and more realistic goals.
The goals of the Revolutions of 1848 were not fulfilled to the point where it can be called a turning point. Some things changed, causing Europe to be different from that point on, but nothing exceptionally good came from the revolutions. There was the potential for everything to change and never go back to the way it was before, but the people who were wanting that change did not have the skill or experience to take their opportunity and make it real.