Abby’s History Presentation 2Trade with China, The Age of Logic, Africa, and Modernizing Russia
Trade with China1700-1830• Through the 1700s, Chinese silk, tea, cotton, and porcelain were highly prized in Europe. They were expensive and in short supply.• Merchants from Britain, Italy, Portugal, and the Netherlands tried to expand trade with China, but the Chinese emperors weren’t interested.• The Qing emperors didn’t want to develop trade because they had urgent problems at home. Years of peace and prosperity had led to major population growth and food shortages. Plus, they were very stubborn, conservative, and remote.• As a result, there were uprisings and protests, often organized by those with political wishes.• By 1800, life was oppressive for many Chinese, and opium had become an escape from the high taxes.
The Opium Trade• Opium is a illegal drug made of the latex of opium poppy.• Europeans traded with Chinese to get the valuable Chinese goods. In return, the illegal Chinese traders would receive opium.• The Chinese liked opium because it gave them “an escape.” From beginning opium, people were said to draw ecstasy, soldiers to draw courage, and other bliss. From starting the drug, people get quickly addicted and would die immediately if they stopped using it.
The Age of Logic1700-1789• In 1700-1789, people began to look at the world through logic and science instead of superstitions and religion. The period can also be called the Age of Reason or the Enlightenment.• Taken to extreme, the Enlightenment resulted in Atheism. Enlightenment thinkers reduced religion to those essentials which could only be “rationally” defended. For example, simple moral beliefs and some universal beliefs about God. Aside from this, religion was banished over the globe.• The Age of Logic/ Reason resulted in the questioning of churches and beliefs almost no one had questioned before.
Enlightenment Video Focusing On InﬂuentialLeaders, Artists, Mathematicians, and More Video
Africa 1700-1830• During the 1700s, Africa was pretty peaceful. An average of 35,000 slaves each year were being sent from western Africa to the Americas. By the end of the century, the British had second thoughts and established Sierra Leone as a refuge for freed slaves. Most European countries stopped trading and using slaves, but Portugal continued until 1882.• Ashanti and Oyo had dominate the slave trades, into the 1800s, so they began to trade ivory, hides, gold, timber, and beeswax instead.• The Zulu nation in southern Africa fought constantly with its neighbors. The bloodshed level was so high that 1818-1828 was known as mfecane or the time of troubles.• Africa was changing quickly. Most of it still belonged to Africans, but they weren’t united against their common threats, the Arabs and the Europeans. This made them quite vulnerable.
Modernizing Russia1730-1796• Catherine the Great was a ruthless ruler and Russia was drained of young men and wealth in taxes to support her wars and ravish lifestyle. She planned to improve social conditions and education, but there were few educated ofﬁcials to carry out these plans. So she asked nobilities to help, and gave them more powers. Thus making the peasant life situation even worse.• Her claim to greatness came from her expansion of Russian lands. Russia seized lands from Sweden and Azov, to Poland and the Black Sea.• Catherine was very cruel, however. Courtiers were ﬂogged and peasants who dared to complain about their lifestyle were punished. Many poor people faced starvation, but Catherine continued to live an extravagant life and collect hard taxes for wars.
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