By William A. Pelz
alongside the best way, William A. Pelz examines the German peasant wars of Thomas Müntzer, the bourgeoisie revolutions of the eighteenth century, the increase of the commercial employee in England, the turbulent trip of the Russian Soviets, the position of the eu operating category in the course of the chilly battle, and the innovative scholars in 1968. He then brings his tale to the current day, the place we proceed to struggle to forge a substitute for a heartless and sometimes barbaric monetary system.
As Germany and Greece argue over who owes what, with the very proposal of Europe crumbling round them, Pelz’s available, provocative background couldn't be timelier. bound to resonate with fanatics of books like Howard Zinn’s A People’s historical past of the United States, this people’s historical past sweeps away the drained platitudes of the privileged and offers a chance to appreciate the tale of Europe from the floor up.
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Extra info for A People’s History of Modern Europe
In any case, the peasants put forth demands that were certainly not obscure discussions on the nature of salvation. 23 These demands included the redirection of the higher than 10 percent tithe for public purposes, allowing only a reasonable subtraction for a pastor’s living. 24 Whether this rebellion was religiously motivated or caused by economic oppression has been a matter of intense debate. It is probably fair to argue it was the latter dressed up in the theological clothes of the former. Of course, for the average sixteenth-century German, the idea of some separation between religion and everyday life might well have seemed puzzling.
A former theology student at the University of Paris who later dabbled in the study of law, John Calvin provided a justification for the increasing independence of the new developing urban business class from their feudal rulers. Unsurprisingly, Calvin’s theology, with its limited tolerance for feudal political authority and an emphasis on the work ethic, fit nicely with the needs and desires of the untitled well-off and other city dwellers. Calvin’s thought provided a religious argument against those radical Protestant ideas that might justify discontent, or even revolt, among the masses.
46 The upheaval caused by the Reformation led to increased possibilities, or what might even be considered freedoms, for common Europeans. At the same time, the shock waves of social change threatened those of the established order who often looked for a scapegoat. The most frequent victims of what has become known as the “Burning Times” of the sixteenth century were Jews, Muslims and largely women accused of being witches. 47 The situation as regards witches needs further investigation. 49 The most notable text used by Catholic authorities (not to suggest that Protestants did not equally engage in witch-hunts) was Malleus Maleficarum (The Hammer of Witches) published by the Catholic Inquisition in 1485–86.
A People’s History of Modern Europe by William A. Pelz