Europe, 1789-1914

Curriculum Guideline

Effective Date:
Course Code
HIST 2202
Europe, 1789-1914
Humanities & Social Sciences
Start Date
End Term
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Contact Hours
Lecture: 2 hrs. per week / semester Seminar: 2 hrs. per week / semester
Method Of Instruction
Methods Of Instruction

Class sections will be divided between lectures and seminar discussions. The seminar discussion sessions will serve as a forum for the analysis and discussion of scholarly literature and as a testing ground for student hypotheses. The instructor will encourage students to elaborate, refine and revise ideas. Discussion sessions will also include tutorials in conducting historical research, the exploration of primary source documents, and practice in oral presentations. Participation in both lectures and seminar discussions is required for the successful completion of the course.

Course Description
This course covers European history from the French Revolution to the eve of World War I. As well as exploring the social, political, and cultural transformation of Europe during the “long” nineteenth century from 1789 to 1914, the course will focus on developments such as the industrial revolution, urbanization, and imperialism as well as revolutionary movements, nationalism and nation-building, ideologies, and the advent of a “modern” frame of mind. Readings will include both primary and secondary sources so as to introduce students to some of the far-reaching problems and debates fundamental to the history of Europe in the nineteenth century.
Course Content

A sample course outline would include the following topics.

Note: Content may vary according to the instructor’s selection of topics.


  1. Review of Historical Methods
  2. The Old Regime
  3. “1789”
  4. Revolutionary France, 1789-1794
  5. Napoleonic France and Europe
  6. The Industrial Revolution: Social Change, Ideas, and Ideologies
  7. Europe in the Age of Restoration and Reform, 1815-1848
  8. The Revolutions of 1848 in France and Central Europe
  9. The Disruption of the Concert of Europe: Napoleon III and the Crimean War
  10. Nation Building: Unification of Italy; Unification of Germany
  11. Empires Under Stress: Austria-Hungary, Tsarist Russia, and the Ottoman Empire
  12. Modernization, Political Polarization, and Conflict 1871 - 1890
  13. The New Imperialism and International Rivalry, 1871-1914
  14. The Challenges of Modernity: European Culture and Society on the Eve of the Great War
Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course the successful student will be able to:


  1. Examine historical sources critically and analytically (reading history). These sources include not only survey texts and scholarly articles, but also short monographs and extended primary sources.
  2. Create and communicate personal interpretations of historical problems (writing history). Forms for communication of personal interpretations include medium-length essays (from 1500-3000 words), comparative book reviews, short interpretive essays, primary source studies, and final examinations.
  3. Independently analyze the ideas of other students and the instructor in class in both tutorials and seminars (discussing history).
Means of Assessment

Assessment will be in accord with the Douglas College student evaluation policy. Specific components of evaluation will include some of the following: mid-term and final exams consisting of short answer questions and essay questions; in-class written work, quizzes, research paper; seminar presentations; short debate/position papers; participation in class discussions.


Specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the semester and will vary according to the instructor’s assessment of appropriate evaluation methods.


An example of one evaluation scheme:

Any combination of the following totalling 100%:

Seminar presentation  10%
Midterm exam  15%
Research essay  30%
Final exam  30%
Class/seminar participation           15%
Textbook Materials

Texts will be chosen from the following list, to be updated periodically:


Blanning, T.C.W. The Nineteenth Century. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.


Gildea, R. Barricades and Border, Europe 1800-1914. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2003.


Goldstein, J.E., and J. W. Boyer, , eds. “Nineteenth-Century Europe: Liberalism and Its Critics.” In Readings in Western Civilization. Vol. 8. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987.


Hunt, Lynn, ed. The French Revolution and Human Rights. Boston: Bedford Books / St. Martin’s Press, 1996.


Merriman, J. A History of Modern Europe. Vol. II: From the French Revolution to the Present. New York: W. W. Norton, 2004.


Popkin, J.D. A Short History of the French Revolution. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson, 2002.


Spielvogel, J .J. Western Civilization, Volume C, Since 1789. 5th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth / Thomson Learning, 2003.


Weber, E., ed. The Western Tradition. Vol. 2, 5th ed. Toronto: D. C. Heath, 1995.


Winks, Robin W., and Joan Neuberger. Europe and the Making of Modernity, 1815-1914. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.


In addition monographs, memoirs, or novels with historical applications may be assigned. Typical samples might be:


Conrad, Joseph. Heart of Darkness. Toronto, Broadview Press, 1999.


Dickens, C. Hard Times. Peterborough, Ontario: Broadview Press, 1996.


Di Lampedusa, T. G. The Leopard. New York: Pantheon Books, 1991.


Marx, K. The Communist Manifesto. London: Penguin, 1998.


Zola, E. The Debacle. London: Penguin, 2000.