The French Revolution Essay

652 words - 3 pages

The years of 1789 to the late 1790's served as a period of uprising and radical change for France and its inhabitants. Beginning with a country in economic turmoil and an unjust political system, France was rapidly transformed into a nation of revolt that triggered a call for revenge upon those who had done wrong. In this case, the wrongdoers were the aristocrats of society, who looked down on the poor as scum and treated them accordingly. The people of France demonstrated during this time-period the power of a nation's citizens, which would come to change France's entire political landscape.
Following the American Revolution, France teetered on the edge of bankruptcy due to the financial support that was given to American citizens as well as King Louis XVI's endless spending. Aside from the funds being expended, the country was affected by drought, cattle disease, and poor harvests, which yielded a scarce income. Peasants' impatience with their leadership grew rapidly as heavy taxes were imposed, and strikes and riots broke out. The government sought to make changes, yet the aristocrats of the society were not seeking any change. The Third Estate was comprised of 98 percent non-aristocrats and a mere 2 percent of nobles, yet the majority could still be outvoted because of the system's partiality to status rather than body. The Third Estate desired to gain support for equal representation, even though the nobles were reluctant to surrender their privileges. At a private meeting, the Third Estate members began to call themselves by the new title of National Assembly, and gained so much support that King Louis XVI was forced to combine all three estates into this assembly.
Even with the steps being taken to procure justice, Parisians grew panicked, and on July 14, commoners stormed the Bastille in order to obtain weapons. This officially started the French Revolution and was quickly succeeded by the Great Fear. Peasants robbed aristocrats and burned...

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