The Enlightenment philosopher John Locke's theory of the right of revolution inspired and challenged the colonies in America and the people of France to revolt. They collected the bravery and strength to defy authority because they were dissatisfied with their current positions with their governments. Both revolutions sought a government that reflected the Enlightenment principles of natural rights, popular power, and equality via wars and hardships. With those objectives in mind, they demonstrated that change could be achieved through revolution. There were considerable contrasts and parallels in the intentions, reasons, and events that ultimately led to the outcomes of the American and French revolutions.
The causes of the French and American revolutions were remarkably similar. Taxes played a role in both revolutions, in one way or another. During the American Revolution, the colonies in America were administered by a limited monarchy from afar, and they were mostly free to govern themselves. The colonial assembly, which were chosen by the people, made laws, paid governors appointed by the King, and controlled the purse, with taxes only passed or raised with the people's approval. As a result, when Britain became indebted following the French and Indian War and decided to tax the people without their consent, the colonies resented their rulers. Their protests eventually led to the American Revolution. The tax dilemma faced by the French Revolution was considerably different from that faced by the American Revolution. Because the country was ruled by an absolute king, taxes were imposed without the people's approval, similar to the American Revolution. The commoners or peasants, on the other hand, had little or no influence in the French system.
Because the king reigned with the "divine authority" from god, no power on earth could stop or order him, the title of absolute monarchy prevented peasants and common people from rising up against the absolute monarchy's actions. The Estates-General, France's only representative assembly, was made up of three Estates in French society. The Third Estate, which was primarily made up of peasants and commoners, paid nearly all taxes and had no special rights. The First and Second Estates, on the other hand, did not pay taxes and lived lavishly off the third estate's taxes. Following their alliance with the colonies in the American Revolution, France, like Britain, found themselves in a financial bind. The French King planned to increase taxes on the Third Estate, but the Third Estate, already overtaxed, revolted against the monarchy, resulting in the French Revolution. The governments of the period and the degree of power given to the people were the differences between the reasons of the American and French Revolutions. The people's anger with the King and his unfair taxing and spending habits gave the Third Estate the purpose of drafting a new and equitable constitution for the government during the French Revolution.
The original objective of the American Revolution was to protest against taxes. However, soon after Thomas Paine's treatise "Common Sense" was published and widely distributed throughout the colonies, the American Revolution's purpose shifted to independence from Britain. However, both the American and the French Revolutions had the same goal in mind: to create a better government.
The events and outcomes of the French and American Revolutions share some similarities and contrasts. In 1775, the Continental Congress was founded to represent the thirteen colonies during the American Revolution. The Third Estate of the French Revolution was renamed the National Assembly in 1789. Both of these organisations represented the people who demanded change and, for a time, governed the individuals who lived through the revolutions' early stages. The Continental Congress ratified Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776, uniting the colonists as Americans in the quest to become an independent nation. The French Revolution published its own proclamation, the "Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen," which was inspired by the American Declaration of Independence. Both declarations were founded on the same notions as philosopher John Locke's "natural law" doctrine. These declarations were significant historical documents that stated the Revolutions' goals and readily represented and shared many Enlightenment principles of reason and law.
However, the outcomes of both revolutions were diametrically opposed. With the support of the French, the colonies were able to gain independence from Britain during the American Revolution. The French Revolution, on the other hand, did not achieve its original purpose as intended. After Napoleon's exile to St. Helena, France was placed in the hands of the Congress of Vienna, a gathering of representatives from France's neighbouring countries who determined the country's post-revolutionary future. The French monarchy was restored at the Congress of Vienna, and Louis XVI's brother was given the crown. The politicians tried their best to restore France and overturn the revolution, but some changes were irrevocable despite their efforts. Although the outcome of the French Revolution did not achieve the people's initial aims, its historical significance continued to have an impact on the future. The distinction between the American and French Revolutions was how successful they were in achieving and achieving their objectives. However, the outcomes of both revolutions had one thing in common: they both resulted in a transformation.
The American Revolution and the French Revolution were significant historical events that revealed the power of revolution to bring about change. After an eight-year struggle, the American Revolutionary War colonies were granted freedom from Britain. Despite the fact that the French Revolution's end did not achieve its original aspirations for government reform, change was indisputably visible throughout. The parallels and distinctions between the two revolutions highlight their desire for change and better governance. The outcomes of the American and French Revolutions have influenced, and will continue to affect the decisions our leaders make today in order to improve our lives.
The American Revolution the History, April 3, 2022, american revolution.com
Encarta, French Revolution, April 3, 2022, Encarta.msn.com/French_revolution
Paul Halsall, Modern Western Civilization class 10: The French Revolution Origins
Author: Liya Smith
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