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Violence of the French Revolution

Violence of the French Revolution

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Published by Sang-won Kim
Question 1: For what reasons, and with what results, was the French Revolution so violent between 1789 and 1794?

Question 2: In what ways and for what reasons did the French Revolution 1) benefit France and b) harm France?
Question 1: For what reasons, and with what results, was the French Revolution so violent between 1789 and 1794?

Question 2: In what ways and for what reasons did the French Revolution 1) benefit France and b) harm France?

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Published by: Sang-won Kim on Jan 28, 2010
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Question 1: For what reasons, and with what results, was the French Revolution soviolent between 1789 and 1794?Question 2: In what ways and for what reasons did the French Revolution 1) benefitFrance and b) harm France?Essay Outlines:Question 1:I.Introduction:a.Thesis Statement: The French Revolution’s violence in 1789-1794 weredue to:1.The radical change in government systems, the appearance of political factions, and the instability and inexperience of government systems.2.Mistreatment of the lower classes for centuries.3.The Authoritative Rule of the TerrorII.Government systems during the French Revolution were in a very instablestate.a.Constant changes within the government and constitution caused lotsof confusion.b.Many political factions abused this in order to gain power, and whenthey did, they slaughtered the opposing side (Jacobins and Girondins).c.Most of the people that were heading the government were learnedmen but did not have governmental experience, so they were easilyswayed by people opinions in order to gain power.1.Robespierre changes his mind on the important matter of executionand says, “Times have changed.”d.Political instability and inexperience led to violence in 1789-1794because they were unable to control the violence that was escalatingin France.III.The 3
rd
Estate had been mistreated for centuries, and they did not have anyrights until the Revolution:a.The Revolution was a way for the lower classes to get back at thenobles for the centuries of mistreatment.
 
b.Fear of a royalist return made people suspect many people and accusethem for unjustified reasons.c.However, many people began to mistrust each other because of thefear of being arrested themselves.d.Fear and suspicion leads to a lot of killing and violence against eachother, not just the aristocrats.Question 2:I.Introduction:a.Thesis Statement: The French Revolution was both beneficial anddetrimental. This is evidenced by:1.Establishment of a democratic system which gave the lower classesa chance to gain power.2.Each citizen is given “unalienable rights”, destruction of FeudalSociety.3.The violence of the dictatorial government of the Terror.II.For the first time in France, the government was not just a hereditarymonarchy but something that citizens could actually say something about.a.The creation of the National Assembly in 1789 gives voice to the 3
rd
Estate, which was over 90% of the population.b.Constitution of 1791 gives voting power to “active” citizens, which wasabout 2/3 of the population of France.c.Constitution of 1793 (although never enacted) calls for “UniversalManhood Suffrage” and the direct election of representatives.d.People voted for the electors who would then vote for the Assemblymembers.e.Mostly gave power to the upper 3
rd
Estate.f.Although The French Revolution did not give power to all citizens inFrance, it gave power to those who had never had such powers before,allowing a more democratic process of government.III.Also for the first time in France, all men are considered equal and deserve thesame rights.
 
a.The Declaration of the Right of Man, created on August 26, 1789,states that:1.All men are born equal and free.2.All men have the natural rights of Liberty, Property, Security, andresistance from oppression.3.Law is to be equal to all people, higher class or not.4.Freedom of Thought and Religion.b.The Constitution of 1791 confirms this further, saying “All men areborn free and remain equal in rights”.c.Night of August 4
th
effectively dismantles Feudalism, as many noblesand clergy give up their rights.d.Although not fully implemented, the declaration that all men are bornequal and the destruction of Feudalism led to less difference betweenthe social classes, which benefited France because the society becamemore democratic.IV.However, The French Revolution had incredible amounts of violence in thereign of the Terror:a.All opposition or even lack of enthusiasm was seen as counter-revolutionary actions and they were completely put down.b.“The National Razor” was the method of killing at this time. This razortook the lives of thousands of people, including King himself.c.The Reign of Terror (1793-1794) was especially violent, and 16000people were killed in a period of 16 months.1.The leaders of this Reign had absolute power, which nullified theprevious ideals of the beginning of the revolution.d.Power-hungry leaders took over the government and nullified theprevious achievements of the Revolution because of their violence andauthoritarian government.V.The French Revolution cannot be considered solely beneficial or harmful,because there were events that were beneficial and harmful, such as:a.The establishment of a democratic government system.b.Creation of Unalienable rights.

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