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From the Radical Phase to the Rise and Fall of Napoleon-3: Best Study Notes.

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The Radical Stage, 1792-1794 Inflamed by their poverty and hatred of wealth, the sans-culottes insisted that it was the duty of the government to guarantee them the right to existence. Such a policy... ran counter to the bourgeois aspirations of the National Assembly. The sans-culottes demanded that the revolutionary government immediately increase wages, fix prices, end food shortages, punish hoarders and most important, deal with the existence of counter-revolutionaries The Reign of Terror The Jacobins now had firm control not only of the Convention, but the French nation as well. They were the government. And they now had even more pressing problems: civil war was everywhere, economic distress had not been lifted, they had to keep the sans-culottes satisfied, they suffered continued threats of foreign invasion and the nation’s ports had all been blockaded. They lived, dreading the possibility that if they failed, so too would the Revolution. The Directoire By 1795, the government had passed into the hands of the five-man Directoire. The new legislature sat in two chambers: the Council of 500 and the Ancients (or Senate). The Directory tried to preserve the Revolution of 1789, insofar as they opposed the restoration of the ancien regime, but they also were decisively against the continuation of popular democracy. Napoleon Bonaparte There is no denying the fact that the French Revolution created Napoleon Bonaparte. Although much of what Napoleon accomplished over fifteen years seemed to undermine the principles of 1789, the end result was that many of the achievements of the Revolution were made French realities. Indeed, these realities were also made manifest across Europe. Government Napoleon provided France with a strong centralized government, a government he would himself dominate, as an emperor. Previous French monarchs could not overcome political barriers (the remnants of feudalism, an obstinate nobility, local traditions and legal problems). Religion In terms of religion, Napoleon personally seems to have bordered between deism and atheism. However, he believed that religion was little more than the cement which held society together. According to Napoleon, religion promoted national unity and prevented class war by keeping poor people meek and mild instead of strong and independent. Law One of the causes of the Revolution was that 18th century France was plagued with numerous and sometimes conflicting codes of law. These codes obstructed national unity and administrative efficiency. Education Like some of the philosophes and the majority of active revolutionaries, Napoleon favored a state system of public education. The curriculum would be secular and schools would be managed under the direction of the state and not the Church. For Napoleon, education would serve a dual role.Economics Napoleon's economic policies were designed to strengthen France and increase his popularity. To stimulate the economy and serve the interests of the bourgeoisie, Napoleon aided industry through tariffs and loans. The Military Napoleon's domestic policies gained the popular support he demanded. But it was his military victories that mesmerized the French people. Summing It Up What, then, did the Revolution accomplish? First, the Revolution weakened the political influence and leadership of the aristocracy. [Show More]

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