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European History During the Age of the Americas

Objective: To provide a broad understanding of the history of Modern Europe during the "Age of the Americas" or "American Age" with the hope of providing the European context for American History and the immigrants that make up our a substantial part of American History and particularly United States History. This isn't intended to provide a comprehensive history of Modern Europe or the Atlantic world and Spanish America, but to understand European events and peoples that impacted the United States and its history. European history is the history of many "pre=Americans" and the source of our institutions. We are a nation of immigrants and for many European History is part of their American History. This has been the guide I have used when selecting books from different times, places and peoples.

This is in no way excluding those Americans from other places. I hope this group grows into groups exploring East Asian, Latin American and West African influences on our history. I would also be open to groups for earlier periods and aspects of European History.

We intend to read about one chapter each week, so the pace will be easy if you are participating in other groups. New chapters will be introduced on Wednesdays.

Everyone is welcome to join us. Click Here To Find Out More About How To Participate In Our Reading Group

Starting in July 2017

The Complete Book List for the Modern European History Group

Our Current Book

Our Current Book Reading Schedule - Week and Chapter

Part 1: Life and Death

  1. Chapter 1: Communications

    Thought Questions
    - What were roads like in the 18th century and how did this effect communication and commerce?
    - What advantages did the "planned" Colonial American communities have in transportation and communication?
    - What was a European turnpike and what social changes did they bring about?
    - What were the advantages and disadvantages of coastal sea travel? of inland waterways?
    - How did easy access to inland waterways economically assist the Netherlands?
    - How did the spread of clocks and watches effect European society?
    - How did waterway canals multiply the ability of animals to move people and cargo?
    - What are the major rivers of the German states, France and Austria-Hungary?
    - How did customs barriers and internal tariffs and tolls effect economic activity and development in the 18th century?
    - How did the development of dependable postal services influence European development during the 18th century?
  2. Chapter 2: People

    Thought Questions
    - What was the relationship between economic development and change and population in the 18th century?
    - What changes in the family and marriage occured in the 18th century?
    - What was the Thirty Years War and how did it effect the European population?
    - How did military conflict change after the Thirty Years War?
    - How are War, Famine and Disease related to each other?
    - In what ways did medicine and health science advance in the 18th century and what factors contributed to these changes?
    - How did gender, family and marriage effect life and change during the 18th century?
  3. Chapter 3: Trade and Manufacturing

    Thought Questions
    - X
  4. Chapter 4: Agriculture and the Rural World

    Thought Questions
    - X

Modern European History Group Reading List

  1. The Pursuit of Glory: The Five Revolutions that Made Modern Europe: 1648-1815 by Tim Blanning
  2. The Pursuit of Power: Europe 1815-1914 by Richard J. Evans
  3. To Hell and Back: Europe 1914-1949 by Ian Kershaw
  4. Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945 by Tony Judt

Click Here To View The Complete Book List for the European History in the Age of the Americas Reading Group