France and England

839 Words4 Pages
France and England, for several reasons, were usually on opposite ends of the historical spectrum. Although each suffered from some of the same political, philosophical and Ideological symptoms, the same could be said concerning their growth and accomplishments. While France evolved from a country ruled and driven by a monarchy handcuffed with religious restrictions, England, with similar components in place, transformed into a completely different state. I believe, because of England’s geographical location and not being invaded or conquered, the isolation shaped its foreign policies to reflect a free and pure state of mind; however, I think proximity dictated foreign policy for all of the countries of that time and place. Which begs the question: If England and France were to switch their locations on the continent, would the English try to conquer Central Europe, North Africa and Russia? I will compare the two countries by listing historically significant events and how internal and external forces influenced each countries foreign policy.

The conditions that enabled the French revolution were some of the following: a weak crop, famine, unemployment, high taxes on the poor and benefits for the affluent; all of which were supported by neighboring countries supporting a monarchy government with a heavy religious influence. Although France was transitioning internally from a civil war, continental neighbors recognized the potential civil threat and decided to intervene for fears of facing the same circumstances and or having to deal with truly republican government. After the revolution, Napoleon installed another monarch based government and proceeded to annex Central Europe, North Africa, Russia and threatened Englan...

... middle of paper ...

...ower prior to any uprisings. France in-turn reciprocated the same support, philosophy and aggression towards its neighbors. But England, however, did not suffer the same fate because, given the countries unique location, it was not subjected to the same external pressures. Therefore it cultivated the thought of universal suffrage and liberalism in politics, trade and religion. But, if the conditions were favorable and an inferior country did not accept the liberal option, England would impose or manipulate that country into accepting its foreign policy. They did not attempt to conquer Central Europe for the same reason they were not conquered, because of the proximity of the country; however, had the conditions been the same as they were in France, I believe names like India, China and Africa would have been exchanged for Germany, Austria, Poland and Russia.
Open Document