The Fall Of The Bastille Essay

The Fall Of The Bastille Essay

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The inclination of the crowd to engage in violence as demonstrated by the fall of the Bastille was not an exception, but the norm of the revolution. Less than a month after this monumental event, peasants revolted, destroying a number of medieval documents and forcing feudalism to be abolished. The violence would continue on October 5, 1789 with the March on Versailles, which is perhaps one of the most shocking events of the revolution. Thousands of women marched on Versailles declaring their need for bread. Their anger was directed mainly at the queen and demanded her to face them. The crowd did not kill her, but declared that the King and Queen had to stay in Paris to witness the revolution. This event did not come without victims, “Two of her bodyguards were not so lucky; their severed heads impaled on pikes served as a clear statement of the mob’s intent.” This demonstrates that even women were out for blood at this time. This event also foreshadows the increasing frequency of the sight of severed heads. Astonishingly, this all occurs a few months within the declaration of the National Assembly. The violence would only increase in the following years leading up to the Terror with events such as the Insurrection of the Tuileries and several massacres. Violence has become second nature at this point which is why the Terror is nothing new except an organized way of killing political enemies that was controlled by a handful of men.
One of the most accountable groups for the spreading of violence and the emergence of the Terror has to be the sans-culottes. It is tough to pin the sans-culottes as they are a humongous group that represented the common people. Nonetheless, it is apparent that many of the deaths that resulted during ...


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... rights for many of those who had never experienced them, and created all sorts of possibilities. Perhaps there could have been a more diplomatic method through which the Revolution could have played out, but it is useless to ponder it. In the end the French chose to focus on ideology, social tensions, and political circumstances which all became major players in the descent into Terror. As a result, the common people of France are accountable for the Terror as well as the radical political clubs, and their leaders such as Robespierre. The individuals and political clubs were nothing without each other and could have served as a check for each other, but they did not. The Terror is simply the result of the French people being so shocked by their own power which arose during the French Revolution and not taking a step back to think practically, instead of emotionally.

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