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HISB92 - Moden European History Lecture 2.docx

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William Nelson

Modern European History Lecture 2 - The French Revolution and Napoleon 1  The Kings of France -Liberty cap: worn by slaves to indicate they were free; worn by French Revolutionists (King wore it, not ruling over people, freed - with the people, has their best interest in mind or freed from himself)  Before Nation-States -not just boundaries but idea of people within certain boundaries being one body -thinking not just local  Corporate Bodies (corp’s) -different from today: memb. in corp. body like a guild was the foundation of their work life, social life and identity; formally recognized (bylaws, charters); part of everyday life -trade guild - have to go through formal initiation after apprenticeship -even though org. around profession doesn’t mean all pertaining to occupant. - social: took care of family after your funeral (after French rev., nation/govn’t starts taking responsibility of services towards people) -also cities: could be consid. corp. body - would have special set of laws different from city nearby because they were sep. body; taxes might differ b/w cities *local differences  The Assumption of Inequality -idea of inequality goes beyond civil and polit. rights; came down to intellect. and phys. ability of people -Natural Inequality -nobles thought they were more worthy, physically stronger etc compared to say a peasant; related to race (just starting to take modern form); could relate to religion, language -Social Inequality  The Great Chain of Being -starts with God/Gods and comes down the scale and becomes simpler and simpler forms of life -natural hierarchy/scale of abilities that directly relates to a social hierarchy (differentiation b/w levels of society; justified by this chain)  Divine Right -special relat. with deity and so justified their ability to rule -other versions: don’t claim a physical place on chain of being; been chosen by God as prince, queen etc.  Duty vs. Freedom -the relat. of citizens to sovereignty; duty born into certain guild etc so had duty to uphold that guild or if born nobleman had to maintain nobility, be benevolent to peasants farming land; duty more important than expressing yourself *freedom: people should have a greater amount of econ. freedom - greater role in politics, more freedom in markets still a new idea but still fighting against people who haven’t questioned duty  Information: Before “News” -info. spread slowly and unreliably -s/t had newspapers but would be censored; product of monarch; not a discussion, no disagreement th about politics etc; beginning 19 century mech. for being informed about country is just starting to blossom  Most widereadching of “Atlantic revolutions” (American, French, Haitian, SA) -emerg. of nation state (ID with nation - nationalism) -abol. most corp. bodies (partic. guilds) - if you were born cobbler, only you could make shoes, no one else unless born that way (monopolized - market became free after) -put into practice new ideas about eq. - people should have say in who’s ruling -undermined divine right Modern European History Lecture 2 - The French Revolution and Napoleon 2 -emphasized freedom in relations to duty -an explosion of media (newspapers, pamphlets, books, cheap illustrations) -pop. sovereignty became attainable  Long-Term Changes -Secularization: the possibility of life without God -not just people are less relig. (going to Church etc. less often); idea of the relat. b/w some other realm and the world realm starts to shift; maybe God exists but he put everything in motion and just sits aside; doesn’t matter if someone has been naturally determined by God - more focused on how world can be run according to human desire and will  Desacralization of Rulers: the quasi-divine status of rulers started to be eroded, undermining the idea of their divine right to rule  The King Becomes a Man -despite a gen. desacral. Louis XVI was still supp. at beginning of Rev -the new nation took shapes as a constit. monarch. -various polit. disagree. b/w king and revout’s occurred -king fled to Varennes in June 1791; capt. and returned -didn’t want to share with constit. body -rev. begins in ‘89, but flees ’91; fleeing seen as being against rev’s -wanted people to have more say in politics but didn’t not want king  Descent through Images -Old Regime Glory a lot of pomp; then liberty cap - citizen -then starts being presented as mockable/stupid (playing with birds, or getting drunk as rev. goes on)satiricle - belittled (no longer even a noblemen riding a horse, shown riding donkey; nobles were the officers/military so only nobles rode horses); then painted with no crown, clothing or marks of distinction “Louis as No More Than a Man” -The Criminal (when caught in Varennes); Demonized -made into a beast (shown with joint body with queen as animals); apotheosis (climax, fulfillment) of desacralization in France by killing king - people decided to  What caused the Revolution? -Financial crisis: -stat overspending too many costly wars; ¾ of state spending was on milit. and milit. debts -France always engaged in war - debt -Question of taxation -would (how taxes would be used to pay nat. debt) -Food shortages -caused by droughts, bad harvests (espec. 1787 and 1788), high prices and restrictions on trade; staples were unpredictable -conviction of the estates-general (first time since 1614; the people had an opportunity to signig. influ. the direct. of the gov.) *showing the weakness of his own position in granting small role to the people to handle this fiscal crisis Modern European History Lecture 2 - The French Revolution and Napoleon 3  Long-Term and Gen. Causes -Rise of public opinion - discussing politics and b/c interested in taking a position on things like if France should be at war again; what portion of taxes etc -Descralization of the monarch -Challenges of subsistence -high and unstable prices of staples foods -many onerous taxes (not equal; taxes on land, specific commodities - salt, forced service - tax you could only pay one of two ways: public work you had to build roads/bridge or you pay someone to do it for you) -Desire for greater freedoms, e.g.: -free trade of goods, abolit. of ec. monopolies, less censorship, the right to openly crit. the govn’t, less price setting by the state  Long-Term and General Causes (Resent twrds syst. of priv’s) -Guild Priv’s: Glazers might be free of one tax across country, in one reg. exclusively pay a certain tax -Noble Priv’s -exmept. from most taxes, exclusive right to some gov. posit’s, exclusive right to be milit. officers -Church priv’s and advantages: no taxes and huge land holdings and high rental revenue (people paid the church to f
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