Archive for the French Revolution Category

French Revolution: Introduction

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis

 

For this part of the blog I will be discussing the ideologies behind the French Revolution in brief and simultaneously be comparing and contrasting the ideologies of the French Revolution to the Cuban Revolution. There will be no links to AOI or Criteria B concepts separately as this will be replaced by the comparing and contrasting. However there will be concepts and AOI’s embedded in the main posts.

VS.

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What Ideological Influences Were The Robespierre Exposed To?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis
Since there were many leader behind the French Revolution I will be only focusing on one of them and his influences from ideologies.               

  

 Maximillien Robespierre’s Exposure To Ideologies            

  
Robespierre was the extremist in the French Revolution and thus the most influential person in leading it. He was a left wing political leader longing for or rather fighting for a change in King Louis XVI’s regime. . He got a scholar to Lycee-Louis les Grande in his early education and he was highly interested/exposed to the ideologies of the Roman Republic, an empire that followed Democracy.His most exposure of ideologies was throughout his education. He also became interested in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s and Montesquieu’s ideologies on which he based most of his actions in French Revolution. Since Jean-Jacques was influenced by Johne Locke meaning that most of Jean-Jacques’ ideas will be the same I will only be discussing about John Locke’s ideologies later on. After graduating he became a lawyer and was mainly known for defending the poor by bringing up ideas from the Enlightenmen such as equality and human rights. Above all there was on outstanding event that took place in his life that made him want to change how France was ruled. This reason was not for the better of people nor for recognition. It was for revenge. When he was 17 he was chosen out of 500 students to deliver a speech to Louis XVI. However the King was late for the occasion, leaving robespierre and the crowd waiting in the rain. Then the royal couple left right after their arrival, this built hatred towards the King inside young Robespierre’s mind. Alth

Maximillien Robespierre

  

ough this sounds like a dramatic event, almost too perfect for it to have happened since Robespeirre was a brutal figure in the French Revolution it must be noted that this information may have been altered to give a more dramatic effect, such as the rain. However the event happened defintely, justified by many sources.

 Comparison to Castro [In terms of influences]              

Similarities:   
  •  Both got their dose of influence through the education       
  • They had a different variety of exposures to ideologies.
  • Fidel had a perfectly molded ‘system’ to be placed, Communism.

 Differences :    

  • Both had personal ‘grudges’ against the dictator in place. [Fidel had his when Batista held a coup and destroyed all chances for him running for an important position]
  •  Robespierre was just using individual ideologies and embeding it into a constitutional Monarchy.

John Locke: Ideologies

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis

These were the main ideas that John Locke believed in. These ideas influenced Rousseau and Rousseau influenced Robespierre.

Social Contract

This is the agreement between the government and the people. The people give the right to a body of people to be the sovereigns or leders that have the authority to conduct and create laws. In return the people should get public order and proper governing.

Reasoning

John Locke belived that all decisions and actions should be based on reason. Conventional practices should be questioed as to why they are done? Seeking for reasons brought about the French Revolution. People started asking why does the third estate get taxed more? Why is the king king if he is unfit for the throne and etc. This caused commotion and added to the natural distaste towards the Monarchy.

Separation Of Powers

John Locke believed that if society was divied up into three compartments with their own responsibilities and their own amount of power that society will function better. This is where the three estates of the French pre-revolution hierarchy come from. However this is a twisted misused version of the sepration powers, making the third estate ‘crippled’ in terms of power and political significance. The Frnech ancien regime was divided like this, the Monarchy, Aristocracy and the Commons. The commons were the third estate, poorly treated and all the power drained from them by the 1st and 2nd estate’s.

Equality: Life, Health, Liberty and The Pursuit to Happiness.

This was also one of Lockes political theories. Every man should have the right to protection, healthcare, freedom and to become whatever they wanted regardless of their social status.

How Does This Link To Robespierre And His Actions?

This was the whole point of the French Revolution. On these foundations did people revolt, fighting, hopefully for a better way of life. Although Robespierre only played a crucial role in the revolution later on during the Reign of Terror. He advocated these ideas of Social Contract and reasoning. Since after the revolution, France was in turmoil with no distinct ‘sovereign”, many parties were created. However one party was created, the Commitee of Public Safety. Robespierre was the president of this party and he automatically had the power for most of the decisions, along with other minor parties. these were the ideologies Robespierre was fighting for even though it was with extremism. He conducted a Reighn of Terror where all anti-revolutionries were beheaded with the infamous guillotine. Every death sentence was justified by the ideologies in the sense that they said they were killing the aristocracy to ‘sustain’ these ideologies in the community. It eventually got so out of hand that even Robespierre himself was executed.

Compare & Contrast Between Marxism and Enlightenment Ideologies [Mainly of John Locke]

Differences:

  • Communism is one system-advocating on how to rule a country economically, socially and politically. It’s organized, it’s got everything in order to rule a country. It’s the ‘one stop shop’. When you promise Communism to people or something similar you cant really twist it so much as to the way Robespierre did.
  • Whereas ideologies from the enlightenment were a bit wishy washy and had loopholes in order to be twisted so corrupt leaders can justify their injustifible actions. The ideologies were all over the place, one could take and mix and twist and do whatever pleased and still keeping the leaders ‘promise’ to the people.

Similarities

  • Both ideologies were directed towards the working class. They were applicable only in political aspects, they lead to political revolutions.
  • The ideologies, if accepted by the majority and came into being gave tremendous power to the hands of a proletariat.

Why Did Robespierre Choose The Ideologies Of John Locke?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis

Note: The ideas incorporated into the new French government are not solely from John Locke but the majority of the ideas are from him and so I will only be focusing on them.

Before the revolution, there was clearly a unfair distribution of wealth and unfair treatment of people. If you were in the 3rd estate you had to face the intensified harships of life. The working class was taxed for basically everything they did. They got taxed for using mills and bread and wine. The workers class was viewed as th ‘factory’ where everything got done. They were viewed as a comodity and they lacked the right to basic human rights. Bringing in these ideologies and putting them into action would solve all the problems faced by the working class. Social Contract would let both the governers and the citizens be in control thus agreement between the 2 parties. Equality will obviosly prevent mistreatment between higher and lower classes and this will keep the lower classes happy. Separation of power will help run the state more smoothly. Running different parts to contribute to one common goal. As they say ‘too many cooks spoil the soup’ and this separation powers is a wise idea. Reasoning was also a good way to approach situations. This would prevent and misuse of power by the higher class as they can’t say ‘We’re taxing you more becuase that’s how its been’.

Compare [Why Did Castro Choose Communism? Vs. Why Did Robespierre Choose Ideologies Of John Locke?]

Similarities

  • They both saw these ideologies as the way to please the majority of the population.[Working Class]
  • Because they wanted to fix the ‘equality’ gap between the workers class and the aristocrats.
  • Brought everyone onto common ground.

 

What Does The Ideas Of The Enlightenment Mean For France In Social, Economic and Political Terms?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis
 
  
Economic Aspect: Due to equality, everyone will be taxed the same. This will reduce the strain on a working class individuals GNP.
  
Political Aspects: The Social Contract and the separation of Power can be classified as a political change.

Political Aspect

The social contract will give the people sovereignty, which then they will pass on to [by voting] to the leader they want to be elected. This will greatly improve public distress as people can and will choose their own leaders. They will be happier because choosing they’re leader you want allows you to choose what laws you want to be governed by, then making the citizens the ultimate sovereign. The separation of power will also greatly improve public mood as each estate gets an area or rule which they are responsible for and they get a certain amount of power. This is also good way of ruling as having a lot of people involved in one thing could result horribly. “Too many cooks spoil the soup”. The use of Reasoning is also a clever idea that will sustain all the other ideas. This eliminates the possibility that the leader will do something selfish and say it is routine or a ritual.      

 
Similarities:
  • Both had effects on the working class
  • They both had effect on the system of ruling

Differences:        

  • The French Revolution was more of a mental relief. It was all about the people and their treatment. Whereas the Cuban Revolution was majorly based on economics and the Cuban Revolution relieved financial aspects.

Social Aspects

  Social Aspects:  The understanding and respecting of individuals as equal regardless of class effects the community as a whole. Eveyone being treated equally almost diminishes the set up of classes creating a closer bong among the people.        

Economic Aspects