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Revolutionary transformations and new languages of freedom The transatlantic disruption between 1750 and 1850 had roots in the mercantilist system of the.

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Presentation on theme: "Revolutionary transformations and new languages of freedom The transatlantic disruption between 1750 and 1850 had roots in the mercantilist system of the."— Presentation transcript:

1 Revolutionary transformations and new languages of freedom The transatlantic disruption between 1750 and 1850 had roots in the mercantilist system of the previous century

2 Revolutionary transformations and new languages of freedom As wealth increased, men and women demanded a relaxation of mercantilist restrictions -Demanded greater freedom to trade -Demanded more influence in governing institutions

3 American and French Revolutions Readings: Smith, et al., 771-776 D 18.7: “Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen”

4 Revolutionary transformations and new languages of freedom Over time, these demands became more radical and revolutionary -Revolutionaries championed the concept of popular sovereignty, free people, free trade, free markets, and free labor as a more just and efficient foundation for society (in America: must end slavery; in France, must end serfdom, feudalism)

5 Political reorderings The spread of revolutionary ideas across the Atlantic world in the second half of the eighteenth century followed the trail of Enlightenment ideas People disagreed over the meaning of terms such as liberty, independence, freedom, and equality We still do

6 Political reorderings – The Decision to Redesign the State Building a republican government – Articles of Confederation not working Government weak and in debt for war Couldn’t make trade agreements with other countries (all states had to go along or did they) Unable to protect shipping of particular states During this time, the prospect of a social revolution of women, slaves, and artisans was very real; elites labeled this "excesses of democracy" Shays's rebellion of 1786 protested negative effects of revolutionary wars on bankrupt farmer veterans from Western Massachusetts

7 Hamilton and Jefferson

8 Constitutional Convention Building a republican government Scope of power of federal government versus state power continued to be debated hotly Constitution a Compromise, but more Federalist (Hamiltonian ) The new constitution substantially enhanced the power of the federal (national) government over state legislatures Anti-Federalists (Jefferson) insisted on the inclusion of a bill of rights to protect individual liberties from government interference

9 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 The French Revolution, even more than the American Revolution, inspired other rebellions around the world, lasting into the twentieth century Origins and outbreak Enlightenment ideas against oppressive government had gained legitimacy among millions and helped propel the nation into revolution


11 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 Origins and outbreak Harvests had been poor for years, leading many peasants to protest unreasonable tax burdens King Louis XVI opened the door for reform when he convened the Estates- General in 1788 to seek new forms of revenue to service the crown’s debt

12 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 Reform turned to revolution as members of the Third Estate (the common people) called for greater representation Upon hearing of these events, peasants rose up in the countryside to protest unfair feudal dues and obligations On July 14, 1789, a Parisian crowd attacked the Bastille, an infamous political prison


14 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 Revolutionary transformation In August, the Third Estate, calling itself a national assembly, abolished feudal privileges of the nobility and clergy and passed a “Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizens” It recognized political equality and popular sovereignty Some people suggested that women be included as citizens, but women's petitions were rejected Olympe de Gouges completed “Declaration of the Rights of Women and Citizens”



17 Key Questions: How much would popular violence influence rational political debate? Is popular sovereignty possible? How do you incorporate working class Parisians, peasants, and women into the polity?

18 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 Revolutionary transformation As the revolution gathered speed, it split into different factions over the goals More elites fled country The Terror Launched by radical Jacobins, including Robespierre Eliminated all symbols of the old regime

19 Have People of Paris Become Source of Sovereignty? Law of Maximum (May 4, 1793) Invade Convention – Persuade Mountain to Arrest 31 Girondist Deputies for Treason (June 2, 1793) Ascendancy of Committee of Public Safety - Robespierre

20 Ended Serfdom

21 Constitution of 1793 “The aim of society is the happiness of all.” “Public assistance is a sacred debt. Society owes a living to the unfortunate among its citizens, either by finding work for them or by guaranteeing the means of subsistence to those who are not in a fit condition to work.” “Education is a necessity for all.” “When the government violates the rights of the people, then insurrection …is the most sacred and necessary of duties.”

22 Women’s Clubs Universal Manhood suffrage proclaimed with Republic (September 1792) Women actively involved in clubs, Parisian sections, Convention (as hecklers) Women’s Clubs Closed (October 30, 1793)

23 Abolition of Slavery Abolition of slavery in French colonies (February 4, 1794)

24 The Revolution “Devours Its Own” Terror: Put on Trial “Enemies of the Nation” for crimes against “the nation,” “against the people” Arrest and execution of Hébertistes (March 13-24, 1794) Arrest and execution of Dantonists (March 30-April 6, 1794) Law of 22 Prairial II (June 10, 1794): “Every citizen is empowered to seize conspirators and counterrevolutionaries, and to bring them before the magistrates. He is required to denounce them as soon as he knows of them.” 40,000 Killed, 300,000 arrested

25 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 The Terror Tried to do away with aristocratic and Catholic influences on the nation’s culture In 1794, moderates regained control of the government upon the execution of Robespierre In 1799, in light of ineffective government, Napoleon Bonaparte and other generals from the army organized a coup

26 The Terror in The French Revolution: Contrasting Images

27 The French Revolution, 1789–1799 In 1804, Napoleon declared himself emperor of the French nation Checked the excesses of the Radical era but let many revolutionary changes continue Allowed religious freedom Submitted a constitution to a plebiscite Code Napoleon codified the nation’s laws into one legal framework emphasizing the equality of men and the protection of individual property

28 Map 15.2 Napoleon’s Empire, 1812 Worlds Together Worlds Apart, 3rd Edition Copyright © 2011 W.W. Norton & Company

29 Napoleon’s empire, 1799–1815 Napoleon envisioned a new Roman empire based on the principles he espoused in France His attempts to bring Europe under French rule laid the foundations for nineteenth-century nationalist strife Strong local resistance appeared in Spain, Germany, and Egypt

30 Napoleon’s empire, 1799–1815 The Congress of Vienna could not turn the clock back completely In many areas, some of Napoleon’s reforms were kept in place, such as the abolition of serfdom among German states The nationalist sentiments that French troops stirred continued in places such as Germany and Italy

31 Question of Sovereignty Up for Grabs

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