HIST 202: European Civilization, 1648-1945

Lecture 02 - Absolutism and the State. The rise of absolutism in Europe must be understood in the context of insecurity attending the religious wars of the first half of the seventeenth century, and the Thirty Years' War in particular. Faced with the unprecedented brutality and devastation of these conflicts, European nobles and landowners were increasingly willing to surrender their independence to the authority of a single, all-powerful monarch in return for guaranteed protection. Among the consequences of this consolidation of state power were the formation of large standing armies and bureaucratic systems, the curtailment of municipal privileges, and the birth of international law. (from

Lecture 02 - Absolutism and the State

Time Lecture Chapters
[00:00:00] 1. The Rise of Absolutism in the Continental States of Europe
[00:11:26] 2. Reaction against War: Absolutism as Reassertion of Order
[00:21:56] 3. The Shape of Government in an Absolute State: Nobles and Bureaucrats
[00:26:50] 4. The Arm of the Absolute State: The Rise of Large Standing Armies
[00:34:58] 5. Representations of the Absolutism in Art and Literature

Lecture 2 - Absolutism and the State
Instructor: Professor John Merriman. Transcript [html]. Audio [mp3]. Download Video [mov].

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Lecture 01 - Introduction
Lecture 02 - Absolutism and the State
Lecture 03 - Dutch and British Exceptionalism
Lecture 04 - Peter the Great
Lecture 05 - The Enlightenment and the Public Sphere
Lecture 06 - Maximilien Robespierre and the French Revolution
Lecture 07 - Napoleon
Lecture 08 - Industrial Revolutions
Lecture 09 - Middle Classes
Lecture 10 - Popular Protest
Lecture 11 - Why no Revolution in 1848 in Britain
Lecture 12 - Nineteenth-Century Cities
Lecture 13 - Nationalism
Lecture 14 - Radicals
Lecture 15 - Imperialists and Boy Scouts
Lecture 16 - The Coming of the Great War
Lecture 17 - War in the Trenches
Lecture 18 - Sites of Memory, Sites of Mourning (Guest Lecture by Jay Winters)
Lecture 19 - The Romanovs and the Russian Revolution
Lecture 20 - Successor States of Eastern Europe
Lecture 21 - Stalinism
Lecture 22 - Fascists
Lecture 23 - Collaboration and Resistance in World War II
Lecture 24 - The Collapse of Communism and Global Challenges