French Revolution Essay
The French Revolution was an event of great importance in the world history. It pursued certain goals and even achieved some of them. Its ideas have got development all over the world and influenced further events in the human history.
However, the question is: was the French revolution successful? It’s necessary to outline the main goals, achievements and failures of the revolution in order to answer this question. Right now you will get acquainted with the custom written essay from our writer of historical essays. Enjoy!
There was absolute monarchy reigning in France in the XVIII century. The power was concentrated in hands of the First and Second Estate, while the Third Estate did not have enough influence to participate in governing the country. Such a situation led to the discontent of middle, lower and working class that wanted to be heard. Consequently, the French Revolution of 1789-1799 pursued the following goals: reaching justice and equality in society, limiting power of the monarchy and aristocracy, extending influence of the lower class, creating a constitution. Not all the goals were achieved but there was a great success on the way to reaching them.
Order an Exclusive Paper of Top Standard
100% Originality Assured. Only Qualified Specialists
King Louis XVI was forced to provide the Third Estate with power and influence by the storm of Bastille. Bastille is the largest and the most famous French prison, which had been a symbol of suppression of lower classes for ages. A group of commoners dared storm the prison on 14th of July in 1789. This event provided the Third Estate with more power.
However, freedom and equality were not reached. The Third Estate developed and introduced the Civil Constitution, which appeared quite radical, providing the lower class with rights and freedom and limiting influence of monarchy and aristocracy. This means that the French Revolution succeeded in getting rights and relative freedom for the lower class but it did not reach the whole goal. For example, freedom for slavery in French colonies led to a disaster because slaves did not know what to do when they got this freedom.
Despite of all the achievements, the French Revolution gradually failed. The Third Estate, which was named the National Assembly, tried to protect the ideas of revolution and to save own power by pursuing people, who criticized the revolt, sentencing them to prisons and to death. This led to mistrust and disappointment of the lower class.
To sum up, the French Revolution was not successful at reaching all the goals but it was a great step to creating a democratic society, which influenced history of the whole humanity.
Of those five choices, I think the best would be "Conflict between the people and the French monarchy sparked revolution" because only this one and the other choices "The Jacobins sought to overturn the French monarchy" and "The cry 'Let them eat cake!' initiated the Revolution" involve the expression of some kind of cause. But "The Jacobins sought to overturn the French monarchy" is more specific than "Conflict between the people and the French monarchy sparked revolution" because the Jacobins were only one of the factions seeking to influence change during the French Revolution, and thus if this were chosen as your thesis statement it would not be effective since you would be expected to restrict your essay to just the role of the Jacobins in the revolution. And "The cry 'Let them eat cake!' initiated the Revolution" is even more specific and thus even more inappropriate for a general essay on the causes of the French Revolution, as well as being somewhat inaccurate; "Let them eat cake" was supposedly a statement uttered by Queen Marie Antoinette that was taken to sum up the indifferent attitude of the monarchy and the nobility toward the French people, but almost certainly that alone did not "initiate" the revolution (though it may have been turned into a rallying cry for the anti-monarchy movement, I'm not sure, though still definitely not a cause of the revolution).
And the other two choices, "The guillotine was an effective instrument for instilling fear and conflict" and "The French Revolution started on Bastille Day, July 14, 1789," have nothing to do with the causes of the French Revolution, though the one about the guillotine arguably expresses one of the reasons for its success--and the eventual counterreaction to the revolution that swung France back toward a more traditional European government and society.