Progressive Ideas & Movements


The Enlightenment

1650 - 1800

An era called the Enlightenment was a period of time when ideas were based around reason rather than religion that influenced the development of many countries. It was also a major catalyst for the American and French Revolutions.

John Locke and Liberalism


John Locke developed his theory of liberalism - power came from people, not from a King's divine right to rule, and there were basic rights to freedom of person and property.


1701 - 1900

The revolutions of the 18th and 19th Centuries resulted in constitutional democracy spreading through the Western World.

The French Revolution

1789 - 1799

The French Revolution took place due to Third Estate's dissatisfaction of the absolute monarchy, who caused the country to go into bankruptcy. This led to several events that were a result of the spreading of the idea of Egalitarianism, supported by the Third Estate who began demanding equality for all citizens as a result of experiencing unfair treatment themselves.

Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen

August 26, 1789

The Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen defines a set of individual and collective rights for all men that are to be universal and valid in all times and places.

Struggle between Liberalism and Socialism

1801 - 1900

Struggle between liberalism and socialism was during the 19th century.

Self-governance of Australian Colonies

1860 - 1890

Egalitarianism is the idea that everyone should have equal rights and opportunities. Australia was at the forefront of implementing changes by instilling these democratic values through the colonies getting authority for self-governance.


1870 - 1889

A system of primary schools introduced elementary education as well as school leaving ages. (1870s-80s)

Universal Manhood Suffrage

19 December 1879

Manhood suffrage is a form of voting rights by which all adult males are permitted to vote regardless of income, property, religion, race, etc.

Women Suffrage granted in South Australia

18 December 1894