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Unit 4: Nationalism, Industrialism, and Imperialism

Lesson G: Russian Desperation and the Ottoman Decline

Review and Assessment


During the 19th century, the Ottoman and Russian Empires were faced with the reality that Europe was surpassing them in economic and military power. Both tried to reform themselves, but internal and external pressures limited their ability to do so. By the end of the 19th century, Russia had slowly industrialized, but internal discontent set it up for eventual revolution. In contrast, the Ottoman Empire had failed continuously to reform and had become known as the "Sick Man of Europe." These weaknesses left both empires vulnerable to collapse, which eventually occurred by the end of World War I.

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Throughout the 19th century, many world empires rose in prominence and competed to dominate the world through industrial power and imperialism. This led to great internal and external changes for these empires. Russia and the Ottoman Empire sought to compete with each other and with the other empires of the world. They faced both internal and external pressures to reform and make themselves relevant in world affairs. Think about what Russia and the Ottoman Empire did during the 19th century to reform their countries and compete in the world as you complete the BCR below.

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Brief Constructed Response - Russia and Ottoman Empire Compete in the World

How did Russia and the Ottoman Empire attempt to compete with each other and other empires for world power and influence?

  • Explain how Russia and the Ottoman Empire attempted to compete with each other and with other empires during the 19th century.
  • Evaluate the success of Russia and the Ottoman Empire in carrying out their goals.
  • Include details and examples to support your answer.

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