In Eastern Europe, the Poles wanted their own state, and in Austria, the Magyars wanted their own kingdom of Hungary. Throughout the Austrian Empire, the various language groups revived the study of their languages and hoped to carve their own nations out of the empire. A particularly potent nationalist force known as Pan-Slavism began to circulate among various Slavs in Russia, Poland, and Austria. All of these Eastern European groups began a renewed interest in their own cultures.


The final important "ism" of the period was Conservatism, a reactionary philosophy supporting monarchy and the old ways. Championed by Edmund Burke, who had been horrified by the French Revolution, Conservatism argued for prudent and gradual change to be made as slowly as possible.


The period from 1815 to 1848 saw an explosion in new ideologies. These various "isms" are still around today. Largely, the "isms" were reactions to or products of Enlightenment thinking, although they all went in a variety of different directions. Many of the new movements therefore dealt with ideas that had been around for a while; but it was only in this period that the ideas gained formal, coherent structure. As new doctrines were born, the question arose: which would ultimately win out? The competition of "isms" still has not been entirely resolved today.

Liberalism in the early 19th century is not the same from what we think of as "Liberalism" today. In fact, much of what was liberal in the 19th century (free trade, keeping government out of business) is today considered conservative. Really, liberalism then was the ideology of the bourgeoisie (the business and professional class), and was geared towards protecting bourgeois interests. Still, the liberals invariably argued that what was for their benefit was actually to the benefit of everyone. The liberal tradition of the 19th century has confusingly become what is "conservative" today in the United States.

Jeremy Bentham, the figurehead of the British Radicals, targeted various reforms in Britain, and did not care at all about customs or traditions. He argued against the preference given to the Anglican Church and opposed monarchy in all forms. He wanted fair treatment of the poor, and wanted to redistrict the Rotten Boroughs. The ultimate unconventionalist, Bentham had his body preserved and placed in a cabinet at University College, London, where it remains to this day.

The socialist experiments of Owen (New Harmony, Indiana) and Fourier (his "phalansteries") in the United States were too marginal to have very much effect on events in Europe. Isolated and comprised of very committed socialists, these socialist experiments ended up, essentially, as dead ends. However, socialism itself helped give rise to one of the most powerful ideological forces of the twentieth century. Some German exiles in France, especially Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, combined the socialist ideas of Owen, Fourier, and Saint-Simon with Republicanism in the 1840s to give rise to "Communism", an ideology aimed against the power of the liberal bourgeoisie.

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