Extent of support for nationalism supporters

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  • 1. The Liberals Liberals believed in a fairer society where the people had a say – not just monarchs. Many Liberals believed this could only be achieved through a united Germany rather than smaller states.
  • 2. The Middle Classes The middle classes made the biggest demands for political change and German unity. The middle classes paid the most in taxes yet had little influence on government spending.
  • 3. The Middle Classes New German wealth was created by the middle classes. Unification meant more economic opportunities. Some middle class people also read revolutionary texts.
  • 4. Student groups A great many students backed liberal and nationalist ideas. They became involved in sometimes violent protests and also set up student societies (Burschenschaften) to promote this.
  • 5. Arguments for influence Strong support for nationalism for amongst Liberals, middle class and students. Group was growing in size and political influence as German economy grew.
  • 6. Arguments against influence Liberals, middle class and students were often the same group – not representative of the entire country. Poorer people lacked an education to expose them to new political ideas.