The Industrial Revolution spread from Great Britain to the continent, where the state played a greater role in promoting industry.
- Great Britain established its industrial dominance through the mechanization of textile production, iron and steel production, and new transportation systems.
- Following the British example, industrialization took root in continental Europe, sometimes with state sponsorship.
- During the Second Industrial Revolution (c. 1870–1914), more areas of Europe experienced industrial activity, and industrial processes increased in scale and complexity.
The experiences of everyday life were shaped by industrialization, depending on the level of industrial development in a particular location.
- Industrialization promoted the development of new classes in the industrial regions of Europe.
- Europe experienced rapid population growth and urbanization, leading to social dislocations.
- Over time, the Industrial Revolution altered the family structure and relations for bourgeois and working-class families.
- A heightened consumerism developed as a result of the Second Industrial Revolution.
- Because of the persistence of primitive agricultural practices and land-owning patterns, some areas of Europe lagged in industrialization, while facing famine, debt, and land shortages.
The problems of industrialization provoked a range of ideological, governmental, and collective responses.
- Ideologies developed and took root throughout society as a response to industrial and political revolutions.
- Governments responded to the problems created or exacerbated by industrialization by expanding their functions and creating modern bureaucratic states.
- Political movements and social organizations responded to the problems of industrialization.
European states struggled to maintain international stability in an age of nationalism and revolutions.
- The Concert of Europe (or Congress System) sought to maintain the status quo through collective action and adherence to conservatism.
- The breakdown of the Concert of Europe opened the door for movements of national unification in Italy and Germany, as well as liberal reforms elsewhere.
- The unification of Italy and Germany transformed the European balance of power and led to efforts to construct a new diplomatic order.
A variety of motives and methods led to the intensification of European global control and increased tensions among the Great Powers.
- European nations were driven by economic, political, and cultural motivations in their new imperial ventures in Asia and Africa.
- Industrial and technological developments (i.e., the Second Industrial Revolution) facilitated European control of global empires.
- Imperial endeavors significantly affected society, diplomacy, and culture in Europe and created resistance to foreign control abroad.
European ideas and culture expressed a tension between objectivity and scientific realism on one hand, and subjectivity and individual expression on the other.
- Romanticism broke with neoclassical forms of artistic representation and with rationalism, placing more emphasis on intuition and emotion.
- Following the revolutions of 1848, Europe turned toward a realist and materialist worldview.