Day 26 – Q 3.Both the American and the French Revolution were based on the ideas of Enlightenment but had different repercussions at home. Do you agree? Substantiate with the help of suitable reasoning.
3. Both the American and the French Revolution were based on the ideas of Enlightenment but had different repercussions at home. Do you agree? Substantiate with the help of suitable reasoning.
अमेरिकी और फ्रांसीसी क्रांति दोनों ही ज्ञान के विचारों पर आधारित थे लेकिन उनके परिणाम अलग-अलग थे। क्या आप सहमत हैं? उपयुक्त तर्क की मदद से स्पष्ट करें।
Enlightenment period of Europe corresponding to 18th century was an intellectual movement which considered human reasoning will light the way to human happiness. American revolution (1775-83) and French revolution of 1789 were influenced by ideas of thinkers from this period.
Various thinkers who influenced with their thoughts
- John Locke asserted the right of people to change government that did not protect natural rights of life, liberty and property.
- Baron de Montesquieu declared powers should not be concentrated in the hands of any one individual—separation of powers.
- Jean Jacques Rousseau stated that society should be ruled by the general will of the people— social contract theory in which he outlined the conditions for legitimate government.
These ideas influenced both the revolutions in following way
- Emphasis on democratic principles like people’s sovereignty.
Ex: establishment of national assembly to frame constitution. Doing away with monarch in France.
- Call to maintain democratic values like liberty, equality, justice.
- Britain imposed trade restrictions, taxes like stamp duty which were unfair. Thus, Americans revolted against exploitative British policy. They asked for representation in British parliament by raising slogan of no taxation without representation.
- In France, certain privileges were enjoyed by nobility, clergy, guilds against which people protested.
However, both countries faced some of repercussions post revolutions like
- Faced instability because of clash of interests Feudalism vs Modernity, Monarchy vs democracy. Conflicting ideologies within national convention like jacobins, girondist ultimately leading to reign of terror under Jacobian ruler Robospierre.
- Country fell under dictatorship of Napoleon Bonaparte.
- Establishment of stable democratic federal government.
- However, increasing differences between northern and southern states on issues like slavery culminated into civil war.
These two revolutions influenced by the ideas of enlightenment age altered the course of history by fracturing the traditional political systems of monarchy, colonies and feudalism.
Best Answer: Ankur