The Domino Revolutions in Europe and the Middle East Essay

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1848 marks the year that Europeans across the continent revolted against their autocratic rulers in favor of democracy and its advantages. Sometimes called the “Springtime of the Peoples”, this rebellion started in February in Paris, France against the monarchy of King Louis-Philippe, and soon the famous phrase by Metternich “when France sneezes, all of Europe catches a cold” (“Europe In Retrospect” 1) rang true as the revolutionary spirit swept across Europe. Liberal revolutionaries marched united in the streets with a list of demands for their leaders. Not much had changed before rulers crushed these revolutionaries without difficulty, and conservatives assumed authority again in Europe, making 1848 the “turning point in modern history …show more content…
The economic failures of both European monarchies in 1848 and autocratic governments of Arab nations present today are one of the widespread reasons triggering the civil unrest of its citizens. These regions endured poor economies and sought an end to the suffering that came with an impecunious economy, namely the large unemployment rate and GDP. In both cases, widespread economic crisis over the previous years sent food prices soaring and made jobs even scarcer. Crop failures in the years prior of 1848 “impoverished farmers and confronted urban workers with high food prices and unemployment.” (Kilbride 4) Agricultural crises also contributed to the economic distress of Arab nations- for example, in Syria, farmers also experienced a “total crop failure.” A United Nations report found that more than 800,000 Syrians “lost their entire livelihoods” as a result of the droughts. (Friedman 4) Not only had there been hardly enough to feed the growing population, in both cases, the crop failures drove food prices up and profits plummeted. (Friedman 1) As profits dropped and population and industry grew, unemployment became a major problem in these nations. In 1848 and 2010 unemployment rose to an all-time high, particularly among youth, ( Sperber 28, “Arab Spring Uprisings” 2) making peasants and workers ripe for revolution. Europeans and Arabs alike were driven by these economic

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