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THE ANCIENT REGIME. WHAT IS THE ANCIENT REGIME? The Ancient Regime We understand The Ancient Regime as the political, social and economical system that.

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Presentation on theme: "THE ANCIENT REGIME. WHAT IS THE ANCIENT REGIME? The Ancient Regime We understand The Ancient Regime as the political, social and economical system that."— Presentation transcript:

1 THE ANCIENT REGIME

2 WHAT IS THE ANCIENT REGIME?

3 The Ancient Regime We understand The Ancient Regime as the political, social and economical system that preceded the decomposition of the Medieval feudalism. The Ancient Regime started in the Renaissance and finished with the French Revolution. This term was used for the first time by the French revolutionaries, to just designate the period they had put into an end.

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5 What were its characteristics?

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7 CHARACTERISTICS A STAGNANT POPULATION. ABSOLUTE MONARCHY FEUDAL SOCIETY SURVIVAL OF THE FEUDAL SYSTEM IN STRUGGLE WITH AN EMERGING CAPITALISM.

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9 DEMOGRAPHY: The Ancient Demographic Cycle: Low Demographic Growth due to: a. High birth rates but with high mortality rates too and a short life expectancy due to: – Poor hygiene- Archaic medical techniques b. Periodic demographic crisis due to: –Famines- Epidemics (Black Death, smallpox, influenza, etc.) –Illnesses- Wars

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11 ECONOMY: Rural Economy Agriculture: first economical source. Represents the 80% of the workforce and 75% of the production of goods. Feudal structure of the property of the land. Few landowners with large portions of land who live off the rent. Industry Guilds Domestic System Factories Trade Luxury trade with the colonies Poor trade inside the realms. Lack of ways of transport (slow and expensive) Poor urban development Most of the people live in the country There are only 22 cities in all Europe with more than inhabitants.

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13 Feudal Society Organised in inequal groups with no mobility. Privileged NobilityClergy Unprivileged PeasantCraftmenBourgeoisie Marginal groups

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15 PRIVILEGED PRIVILEGES NOBILITY DONT PAY TAXES MONOPOLIZE PUBLIC AND MILITARY OFFICES. OWN LARGE EXTENSION OF LANDS JURISDICTIONAL DOMINION OF THE TERRITORY LIVE OFF THE RENT FEUDAL RIGHTS CLERGY DONT PAY TAXES TITHE FEUDAL RIGHTS JURISDICTIONAL DOMINION OF THE TERRITORY

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17 NOT PRIVILEGED 97% OF THE POPULATION ALL OF THEM PAY TAXES LIVE IN THE CITIES TRADERS, FINANCERS, OFFICIALS, DOCTORS, ETC. THEY ARE RICH BUT THEY DONT HAVE PRIVILEGES AND THEY CANT PARTICIPATE IN THE POLITICAL POWER BOURGEOISIE LIVE IN THE COUNTRY THEY REPRESENT THE LARGES GROUP OF THE POPULATION IN THE ANCIENT REGIME THEY ARE POOR OR VERY POOR MOST OF THEM DONT OWN THE LAND THAT THEY WORK THEY LIVE UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF A NOBLEMAN OR CLERGYMAN THEY HAVE TO WORK FOR FREE IN THE LAND OF THEIR LORD. PEASANTS LIVE IN THE CITIES VERY HETEROGENEOUS: CRAFTMEN, WORKMEN, DOMESTIC STAFF, ETC. COMMON PEOPLE OUTCASTS TRAMPS MADMEN ETC. OTHER MARGINALIZED MINORITIES.

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19 ABSOLUTE MONARCHY THE KING HAS ALL THE POWERS OF THE STATE (RULES, MAKES LAWS, JUDGES) PHILOSOPHERS BOSSUET: DIVINE RIGHT. HOBBES: SOCIAL CONTRACT. MEANS BUREAUCRACY, ARMY, TAXES, DIPLOMACY, MINISTRIES. ENLIGHTENED DEPOTISM EMPEROR JOSEPH II: EVERYTHING FOR THE PEOPLE, NOTHING BY THE PEOPLE. NOT ABSOLUTIST STATES USA., GREAT BRITAIN, HOLLAND VENICE.

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21 ABSOLUTE MONARCHY The medieval systems of government, in which the kings power was limited by the feudal rights of the nobility, werent any more the political, social and economical reality in the XVIII century. Development of the idea of a centralized state. This type of monarchy was established in great part of Europe. Specially in France, Russia or Spain.

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23 DIVINE RIGHT THEORY The royal authority was an expression of Gods wish. It was understood that the king always acted for the benefit of the people, as an agent of God. The Divine Right set out the principle that the kings subjects didnt have any right superior to that of the king (the subjects dont delegate their power to the king). Therefore they had no right to revolt against the king.

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25 THE ABSOLUTE MONARCHIES Louis XIV the Sun King The means the kings used for the exercise of their ilimited command were: the Cabinet, the Army, the Bureaucracy and the Diplomacy. The Absolute Monarchy in France reached its peak with Louis XIV. His person was completely identified with the state with the sentence I am the state.

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27 THE ABSOLUTE MONARCHIES The kings Charles V and his son Philip II represented the height of the monarchy and of the Spanish empire. Both of them followed the Absoulte Monarchy but delegated their power to their favourite advisers. Charles V of Spain

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29 THE ABSOLUTE MONARCHIES The reigns of Henry VIII and his daughter Elisabeth I, managed to relegate the role of the parlament as a mere consultive institution, which led to internal problems with the parlament. Henry VIII Oliver Cromwell

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31 MOVEMENT AGAINST THE ABSOLUTISM: THE ENLIGHTENMENT The Enlightenment was a social, scientific and cultural movement of intellectuals during 18 th Century for the reason and the social reform, and against superstition, intollerance and abuses in church and nobility.

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33 Forerunners of the Enlightenment –Montaigne ( ) About European colonization of America: Why is it okay for Europe to impose its values on other lands? These foreign cultures had their own complex set of customs, laws and beliefs. Who was to say if Christian Europe was right and these people were wrong? -Descartes ( ) Author or the statement I think, therefore I am. In other words, if people start from the point acknowledging their very existence, then they can prove the existence of God, with mathematics and reason, not just with faith.

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35 The Age of Enlightenment (18 th Century) While early thinkers such as Descartes and Pascal helped build a framework for enlightened thought, later philosophers are best known for spreading the Enlightenment throughout Europe and beyond.

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37 Main figures of Enlightenment Baron de Montesquieu ( ) (real name: Charles Louis de Secondat). Montesquieu wrote two important books: Persian letters (1721), that described how fictional Persian travelers viewed France and its government, and The spirit of laws (1748), by means of which he proposed his theory about the separation of powers. Maybe we owe him the way of government that all the democratic governments have nowadays.

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39 Voltaire ( ) (real name: François- Marie Arouet). Writer, historian and philosopher famous for his advocacy of civil liberties, including freedom of religion, freedem of expression, free trade and separation of church and state. Although he constantlly mocked the aristocracy, he was a frequent guest in French salons. We owe him statements such as I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it, It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong or As long as people believe in absurdities they will continue to commit atrocities.

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41 Jean-Jacques Rosseau ( ) Swiss writer, philosopher and musician. Author of The Social Contract, where he says that the people must own the sovereignty of a country and delegate it in the assembly, also chosen by the people. He also thought that humans are good by nature, and that society is what makes us bad.

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43 Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès ( ) (Abbé Sieyès) He was a clergyman and, though actually he wasnt an abbott, people used to call him Abbé. He was the author of the 1789 panphlet What is the third estate?, where he wrote: What is the Third Estate? Everything. What has it been hitherto in the political order? Nothing. What does it desire to be? Something."Third Estate

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45 MORE TO COME…


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