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World History Midterm Exam


PART I: Answer 6 out of 10 Questions ONLY. Short answer responses should be detailed and relate to specific events, persons, ideas as much as possible. Answers should be AT LEAST 3 complete sentences.


1. According to Karl Marx, what is history the story of? Evaluate the significance of this claim for Marx.



2. Why do some scholars claim that the development of the Enlightenment is foundationally flawed or hypocritical?



3. Explain two ways in which Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species gave weight to New Pessimistic arguments?



4. Explain two major global effects of Industrialization.



5. In the document concerning the French Captain’s report on Haiti, evaluate the actions and motivations of the Spanish.



6. The “meta argument” in European society from around 1789-1848 predominately consists of which two factions? Describe and explain two issues these two factions argue over.



7. Why does the advent of capitalism encourage Europeans to abandon mercantilism in favor of free-trade?



8. How does the Sepoy Rebellion in India contribute to the development of New Pessimism in European thought?



9. Explain the influence of the French Revolution on European colonies in the Americas.



10. What does Fukuzawa Yukichi’s attitudes about the West tell us about Asian responses to growing European power?


PART II: Associate the following quote with ONE OR MORE of the -isms we have discussed this semester. Explain your answer in at least 4 complete sentences drawing on specific examples from the image or quote. Answer ALL QUESTIONS in this section.


1. If I should die, think only this of me: That there’s some corner of a foreign field That is forever England. There shall be In that rich earth a richer dust conceal’d; A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware, Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam, A body of England’s, breathing English air. Wash’d by the rivers, blest by suns of home. And think, this heart, all evil shed away, A pulse in the eternal mind, no less Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given; Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day; And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness, In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.


2. “After long periods of error, philosophers have at last discovered the true rights of man and how they can all be deduced from the single truth: that man is a perceptive being capable of reason and acquiring moral ideas. At last, man could proclaim his rights out loud, rights that for so long had been ignored. He could submit all opinions to his own reason and use that reason to search for truth. Every man learned with pride that nature had not forever condemned him to base his beliefs on the opinions of others or the superstitions of antiquity. Thus developed an understanding that the natural rights of man are inalienable and cannot be forfeited and a strongly expressed desire for freedom of thought, trade, and profession. There also developed a desire to alleviate people’s suffering, to eliminate all criminal laws against political dissenters, and to abolish torture. A desire arose for a milder system of criminal legislation that could give complete security to the innocent. All of these principles gradually filtered down from philosophical works to every class of society whose education went beyond basic literacy. These principles became the common faith of all people.”



3. “I address you in Hungarian today* because reviving our language is like cleansing the mirror of our history, so that the flies buzzing around may not deprive us of its light. It is a sad fate for a nation to perish—especially a nation such as ours that can boast of brilliant feats and that has only sunk to its present condition through the bitter workings of fate. It is of no use to try to accept with stern philosophy, common sense, and cold blood that all men are equal in everything, that the whole human race is a single nation. No! We are national beings and we were raised with our Hungarian selves that way, so that we can never be Germans, or French, or Poles, or Spaniards. We long for glory in this life as Hungarian sons of the Hungarian nation and, in the next, we pray that the angels of the heavens may know us as Hungarians. It is time for the mind of the Hungarian nation to be clarified through a revival of our mother-tongue. How can our educated classes study the languages of Europe, if we are forgetting our own? How could we lift up our people, most of whom live in the countryside, if we cannot offer them books to read in the language they speak? What we urgently need is a group of scholars who would be paid solely to translate works from Latin, French, German, and Greek into Hungarian—this would do more good for the refinement of the country’s mind than a thousand Latin and German schools.” *At the time, many educated Hungarians preferred to communicate in German, the language of the Austrian Empire of which Hungary was a part.





4. “Writing now, at an age beyond sixty, I must admit that we do not understand the operations of God’s wisdom and are, therefore, unable to tell the causes of the terrible inequalities that we see around us,—why so many people should have so little to make life enjoyable, while a few others, not through their own merit, have had gifts poured out to them from a full hand. We acknowledge the hand of God and His wisdom, but still we feel horror at the misery of many of our brethren. We who have been born in a more fortunate condition—we to whom wealth, education, and liberty have been given—cannot, I think, look upon the unintellectual and toil-bound life of those who cannot even feed themselves sufficiently by the meager wages they have earned with so much sweat, without experiencing some feeling of injustice, some sting of pain. This consciousness of wrong has produced in many enthusiastic but unbalanced minds a desire to make all things right by pursuing equality. But any careful observer of our society, or any student of our history has to admit that, as unjust as it may seem, inequality is part of the natural order of things. You can make all men equal today, but God has so created them that they shall become unequal again tomorrow. The very word ‘equality’ presents to the imaginations of men ideas of communism, of ruin, and insane democracy. Instead of obsessing about equality, we should be working toward the diminution of inequalities—provided, of course, that we do so gradually and without any sudden disruption of society.”

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