French Revolution - Fight For Liberty

1631 Words7 Pages
Rousseau once said, “Liberty is a succulent morsel, but one difficult to digest.” What does the quote mean? Who is Rousseau? And most importantly, what is the French Revolution, and how does it have anything to do with succulent morsels? Rousseau is stating that liberty is indeed something that everyone desires, but for those who achieve liberty, it’s something that is difficult to handle, and without proper moderation, liberty can be more of a hindrance than an asset. The relationship between Rousseau and the French Revolution, however, may require some further research years prior to the revolution. Before the French Revolution that occurred during the late 18th century, France was considered one of the most advanced and opulent countries in Europe. It was in the center of the Enlightenment era, a period of time from the 1600s to the 1800s that is considered today as one of the most significant intellectual movements in history by encouraging a new view of life. The age sparked hundreds of important thinkers such as Thomas Hobbes, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, John Locke, Thomas Paine, and Adam Smith. The Enlightenment was the fuel that sparked a worldwide desire to reshape and reconsider the ways that countries were governed. Limited monarchies, direct democracies, limited democracies, and absolute monarchies, among others, were many forms of government that were disputed by these thinkers. Jean-Jacques Rousseau, one the many significant Enlightenment thinkers, believed in a direct democracy, a system in which a country is governed by many, and where no one person has a considerable amount of power. This idea that citizens should receive independence and a voice would later stimulate the French and result in what is now k... ... middle of paper ... ...took away rights that women had won during the French Revolution, such as the right to sell their property, and freedom of speech and the press were restricted rather than expanded. On December 2, 1804, Napoleon walked down Notre Dame Cathedral where he crowned himself emperor, and France had once again returned to a monarchic system. Rousseau was spot on when he had said that liberty was a succulent morsel, but one difficult to digest. Years after his death, France would leave behind its monarchy to fight for liberty and freedom, only to return years later as a monarchy after finding liberty something too difficult to digest. The United States of America has been fortunate enough to find the perfect balance between liberty and restraint, although other countries in the past, such as France have not been so lucky in their quest for this succulent morsel indeed.

More about French Revolution - Fight For Liberty

Open Document