• German literature therefore propelled the liberal claims in a crucial mannerGerman literature therefore propelled the liberal claims in a crucial manner
  • Heinrich Heine was a popular german writerHeinrich Heine was a popular german writer
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  • process of the industrial revolution had profound impacts on societyprocess of the industrial revolution had profound impacts on society

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Literature and its ideas

As the bourgeoisie had increased steadily over the 19th century the interest in German literature increased accordingly.
The claims for freedom and German unity were distributed in a substantial way over newspapers, leaflets and books. Popular writers like Heinrich HeinecustomHeinrich Heine was a German poet. His radical political views led to many of his works being banned by German authorities, Ludwig Börne or Karl Gutzow were figureheads for the liberation from absolutism. Even though they were largely restricted by censorship many artist managed to publish works of ridicule, sarcasm and satire. The German literature therefore propelled the liberal claims in a crucial manner.

Political ideas


1) Conservatism

Sovereignty of the people and a national state were to be rejected. The rein of sovereigns legitimated by god was most important, thus making religion the most influential command over society.

2) Liberalism

Liberalism had its origin in the era of enlightenment. Its aims are civil liberties and equal right to vote. As most liberals refused of a radical revolution however the liberal movement eventually split up.

3) Nationalism

The French revolution was one example of state and nation forming one unity. As the German confederation was only maintained by absolutistic sovereigns, wishes for a German national state developed increasingly.

The social question

The industrial revolution in the 18th century affected a mondernisation of technical possibilities. This process had profound impacts on society. As the manufacture had been replaced by modern machinery the unemployment rate rose severely. People who had previously worked in agriculture moved to big cities. Due to medical improvements the mortality rate could be reduced drastically, leading to overpopulation, mass unemployment and pauperism and a consequent social transition. In this context the philosopher Karl MarxcustomKarl Marx was a popular German philosopher and revolutionary socialist  held the opinion that the labour force should seize power to overcome class distinctions.

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