Odisha State Board CHSE Odisha Class 11 History Solutions Unit 4 Long Answer Questions.
CHSE Odisha 11th Class History Unit 4 Long Answer Questions
Long Type Questions With Answers
What are the main features of the Industrial Revolution?
The Industrial Revolution had the following main features. Firstly, industrialization made more inventions and discoveries possible. The Spinning Jenny, Mule. Cotton Gin, Steam-engine, Flying shuttle, Water frame, and lamp Power Loom were the most significant ones in this regard. Secondly, the ideology of capitalism came to replace the age-old and outdated stem of feudalism. New capitalist class industrialists and entrepreneurs came to replace the old feudal lords in European societies.
Thirdly, with the growth of industrialization, a large number of rural people migrated to industrial centers in search of better means livelihood. They joined the industries as workers and laborers. They had to, now, set up their new homes in industrial centers, away from their ancestral villages. governments were now bound to pass social legislation in favor of their living and working conditions.
Fourthly, it gave rise to specific difficulties and problems in the industrial centuries. The problem of housing workers, their health sanitation needs, working conditions, and an ever-increasing population of workers were problems to be attended revolutions to these have to be gradual, not Overnight.
Fifthly, it led to an increase in the production and sale of goods, as stated earlier, result, trade, and commerce made rapid progress. Sixthly, agriculture and industries became the two legs or the main pillars of the economy. Gone were the days when European states depended only on agriculture for their survival and sustaining themselves. Finally, industrialization led to competition among the nation-states of Europe.
From industrialism to colonialism, from colonialism to commercialism, from commercialism to imperialism, from imperialism to militarism, and from militarism to war were the natural and inevitable phases. Industrialization lay at the root of competitive nationalism. This finally led to a clash of interests and war among nations.
Discuss the inventions that brought in the industrial revolution?
Spinning Jenny – The following is ‘a list of the first inventions that accounted for the outbreak of the Industrial Revolution. Textile Industry – The Englishmen had colonized India. India was famous for the quality and quantity of its production of cotton. The Englishmen took away Indian cotton to England in huge quantities. But weaving cotton and spinning its thread was done manually.
The weaver wove cloths out of threads spun out of cotton by the English housewives. It took the ladies a lot of time to spin a thread for a single piece of cloth, The need quicker spinning was urgently felt The solution to this problem came in 1764 when the Englishman James Hargreaves invented the “Spinning Jenny”. This machine could spin 8 threads at a time.
This machine revolutionized the spinning of threads. It was later improved to bring out nearly a hundred threads at the same time. This small wonder was so important that England came to have more than eighty thousand spinning jennies by 1778, the year death Hargreaves. Spinning work was thus greatly speeded up. Arkwright – John Kay invented the Flying Shuttle by which the weaving process was speeded up.
Richard Arkwright improved upon Hargreaves and Kay by inventing the water- frame in 1769 This water frame could have thinner stronger threads. In 1776 Samuel Crompton invented the spinning “Mule”, further improving upon the quality of threads. Cartwright’s Powerlopms Correspondingly, weaving also underwent great change. Hand-weaving had been improved upon by the flying shuttle of John Kay.
But this was not enough to cope with the volume of spun threads. The hand-loom was replaced by the power loom which was invented by Edmund Cartwright in 1785. The power loom did the work of many weavers and took up a fraction of their time. Powerlooms came up in every nook and comer of England.
Eli Whitney, the American inventor, invented Cotton Jin in 1793. The above inventions radically changed the textile industry for the better. It involved less manpower and still less cost reproduction while greatly increasing the volume of production (or ‘output). Profit and prosperity came as a natural result.
How are Coal and Iron Industries part of the Industrial Revolution?
Coal and iron were the two basic factors of progress. Coal was the source of energy. But mining coal was difficult. The water underground made coal mining difficult. This water had to be emptied by buckets. It took a lot of time and money because holies in hundreds were used in every colliery for emptying the water bucket by bucket. Finally, Thomas Newcomen invented the 1705, Steam Engine to pump out water from the mines.
James Watt improved upon this invention in 1769 and these improved versions of the Steam Engine served the purpose in a more efficient and economical manner. Factories could now be set up in the heart of a city. Steam power helped the machines also to run better and produce more goods in less time. In the early days smelting of iron was done in charcoal furnaces. The iron, thus produced, was of low grade. In 1750Abraham Derby started using coal to process iron.
This helped England, in particular, because England was rich in coal deposits. This process made the industries produce steel at a cheap rate. As a coal-mining was dangerous, Humphry Davy invented the Safety Lamp. Miners used this lamp for mining coal in the underground darkness. Thus coal and iron revolutionized the world of industry. The modem age came to be known as the “Age of Iron and Coal.
How were transport and communications – are of Industrial Revolution?
With the growth of steam power, the transport and communication scene witnessed corresponding improvements. The British engineer John Macadam started the mode of building ‘macadamized’ roads. In 1814 Sir George Stephenson invented the “Rocke” which was a railway engine driven by steam power: This steam engine ran the first locomotive between Manchester and Liverpool. Steam engines revolutionized navigation and iron ships driven by steam power replaced the old ships of wood.
In 1838 the Atlantic ocean was crossed by two such new ships Ocean travel and maritime trade and commerce came to flourish from then on. The entire communication network came to be helped by the invention of the telegraph in 1835 and of electric telegraphs by Samuel Morse in 1840, Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone in 1876, and Marconi’s invention of the wireless. Thomas Alva Edison invented 187 8 the electric light. The age of electrical most radically transformed the modem world.
England was a prosperous country. For centuries, it was carrying out trade and commerce with other countries. England also had access to plenty of natural resources and materials for herself and her colonies. The shipping industry of England was the biggest and best. The cost of labor was cheap due to the shifting of people from villages to cities. All the city’s reasons explain why the industrial revolution, first, took place in England.
After the machines were invented and came into use, England became the foremost industrial nation in the world within half a century. Between 1813 and 1855 Egland’s textile exports to India increased fifty times, coal production rose by over four times, and pig-iron, over four times. England’s industrial revolution and prosperity came to affect and inspire countries in Europe.
France, Spain, Prussia, Portugal, Holland, and others adopted the industrial revolution and, by the second half of the 19th century, the whole of Europe even the far-away United States of America came to be under its total influence, age of electricity brought more light to human civilization as a whole.
Results of the Industrial Revolution :
The industrial revolution has had no end so far. From machines to electricity to the modem space age of nuclear energy, the industrial revolution is still continuing. As such its results so far can only be studied. Its record so far has been glorious. It has marked a giant step forward for human civilization as a whole.
But while like a flower the industrial revolution has spread its fragrance throughout the world, like a disease it has also infected human civilization. The following analysis of its merits and demerits would show how “Industrialisation was a mixed blessing.
Write the merits of the Industrial Revolution?
The merits or advantages of the industrial revolution are summed up as under. Firstly it led to mechanized production. This, in turn, increased production much more than before. Thus, it resulted in improved production, in quality and quantity. This was true of both agriculture and industry. Mass production of goods inaugurated an era of plenty. Secondly, agriculture was to benefit immensely from the industrial revolution.
New tools and machines, steel plow and harrow for tilling, the mechanical drill the planting of seeds, and machines for thrashing, reaping, and cultivating mechanized agricultural production. As such the harvests became bumper and production increased by leaps and bounds with the use of chemical fertilizers. Thirdly, the mass production of goods and articles gave encouragement to trade and commerce.
Transport and communication systems improved with the network of roads and railways. Water transport did not lag behind. Travelling and transportation of goods revolutionized. Europe became one big trading village, with this conquest of man over time and distance. Human mode of life became fashionable and more comfortable with the production of articles of basic and conventional necessities.
Life was pleasant and comfortable, with man’s needs being satisfied more fundamentally and easily. Fourthly, the exploration of markets abroad and beyond the shores of Europe started more seriously. Before shins and navigation helped the process. Internpailade improved. Fifthly; serialization bought urbanization of cities in industrial centers. The inadequacies of village life came with the new urban life. neighbors and gradually demanded political rights.
Trade-union of workers came tip to successfully work for the protection of workers’ rights. Sixthly, the industrial revolution resulted in a contrast. While it came to strengthen capitalism, it also gave birth to communism as propagated by Karl Marx. Seventhly, the growth of science and technology continued unabated. The tire industrial revolution was the greatest blessing for mankind in this regard. The conquest of time brought more leisure, which came to be used for creative purposes.
Write the demerits of the Industrial Revolution?
The industrial revolution brought, in its wake, a host of demerits. Firstly, it broke the back of the self-sufficient rural life. The old life style was replaced by a new economic system that brought a virtual end to traditional society. In this transition, artisans of village industry and the peasants came to forfeit their hereditary means of livelihood. Farmers became landless laborers and artisans gave up their ancestral profession to seek means of livelihood in industrial centers.
In a word, the industrial revolution broke the link with the past. People found it difficult to adjust to this transition. Secondly, rural unemployment led to the overcrowding of cities and industrial centers. As such, unemployment in the cities grew. Not everybody can get a job in an industry because the industry would not absorb any laborer over its needs. Increased unemployment led people to frustration.
More availability of labor led to lesser wages. As such the gulf between the rich and the poor widened. This led to class rivalry between the capitalists or the rich or the ‘Haves’ and the laborers or the poor or the ‘Have-nots’. Thirdly, therefore, the industrial revolution made class wars inevitable. Fourthly, the industrial revolution led to capitalism inside countries; but on the international stage, it brought competition, imperialism, and war among the nations.
Fifthly, the industrial revolution made the life of the workers and laborers wretched. Miserable life in the slums of the cities, with no sanitation or hygienic living conditions and exposure to smoke and gas pollution, brought diseases. No grant of leave, no insurance against death by disease or by accident, and the burdens of poverty made their life hell. Sixthly, industrialization brought the political ideology of imperialism into Focus on the international stage and made war inevitable.
From an economic and political point of view, it brought capitalism and communism face to face. It also led to Europe’s colonial and commercial hold over the rest of the world. Thus as a result of the industrial revolution, human civilization came to have a post and materialism came to have a future. The victim was humanism.
State the development of colonial government in England?
Meanwhile, certain political changes had come to the fore in England. Queen Elizabeth was succeeded to the throne of England by James I of the Stuart dynasty. James, I was a Catholic and adopted a policy of religious persecution of the Protestants and Puritans of England. The English Puritans, on their part, hated to be brought under the English Catholic Church and decided to leave England to settle elsewhere.
Thus have they come to be known as the Pilgrims. In 1620, they left England from the port of Plymouth fol. North America in a ship named ‘May Flower’. These Pilgrims were known as ‘Pilgrim Fathers’, the ancestors of the modem Americans. They landed at a port that they named as Plymouth in an area to be known as Massachusetts. This ‘May Flower’ voyage came to be followed by many such voyages from England during the reigns of James I and Charles.
The Puritan unhappiness was the principal cause of this exodus. There were certainly other reasons as well. The plight of poverty at home and the promise of prosperity on the fertile lands of the “New World” was under such consideration. Then there was also a zeal for freedom from feudal burdens and the old social system as well. The prospects for living in a free society were also alluring. Thus the English Pilgrims began pouring into America.
The Irish, the Dutch, and people from different German states also came away to America in large numbers. A healthy climate, fertile soil, and an unlimited prospect for prosperity were too tempting. Gradually the English came to settle down in the area permanently. settlements came to be known as colonies. As many as thirteen such colonies came to be established. All these were on the Atlantic Seaboard of North America.
Each colony flourished in its own way, but the procedure for government and administration came to be uniformly based on their English background. The English system of laws and law courts was introduced. Each colony came to have its legislative assembly and a governor. The governor was regarded as the supreme executive authority and was broadly regarded as the representative of the English King. The colonial people came to prosper and flourish. Each colony flourished in its individual way.
Better economic life than their living standards in England led to a sense of pride and contentment. The English Government and people came to regard the thirteen colonies, as English property, because their people had done it. The people of the thirteen colonies had also theoretically accepted it, having made provision for treating the Governor as an agent of the British Crown in a broad sense.
England had thus come to be regarded as the mother country of the thirteen colonies. It was nice of the colonial people to owe loyalty to England, for this was more out of their habit than out of any necessity. The only genuine necessity was with regard to their own security. France had already entrenched herself in her Colonies in Canada, to the north of the thirteen colonies. Fear of a French invasion had led them to owe allegiance to England in expectation of English protection in such contingency.
However, they, later on, came to be discontented with England because of the various manners in which England came to exploit them. The seeds of discontent had come to be sown. The opportunity for their germination came during and after the Seven Years’ War (1756-63) in Europe. In this European War, the English triumphed over their enemies including France. The English captured Canada from France. With the fall of France in Canada.
Die threat of French invasion vanished for the thirteen colonies. Time was now ripe for them to re¬assert themselves. They now decided to break the chains of the English colonial yoke. Discontent spurred them. The ideals of life; liberty and the pursuit of happiness moved them. Many other factors also came to inspire them to rise in revolt against the English.
Write the causes of the American War of Independence.
The causes of the ‘American War of Independence were many. The upheaval was a sign that the thirteen colonies had reached such a degree of economic, political, and cultural maturity, that their achievement Of autonomy was inevitable. But it was also a consequence of certain new developments in British colonial policy that provoked the colonies into asserting their independence.
Its causes can therefore be broadly classified into two categories, i.e. the fundamental causes that ignited the spark of discontent and the immediate causes that brought it to a conflagration.
England symbolized old and traditional institutions like the Church, monarchy, and feudal heritages as well as a general conservatism. On the other hand, ever since ‘May Flower’ brought the ‘Pilgrim Fathers’ to American soil, they had developed a progressive outlook for a society of free men without the bondage of the Church or such other out-of¬date restrictions.
They stood for modem outlook, wherein life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness were to be the subtle visions. Thus, superior progressive political consciousness tempted them to separation.
Sense of Economic equality and Individual dignity :
Economic equality was a beacon feature of American Society. There was no feudal heritage nor stake. Each was free to develop his economic condition through perseverance and imagination. This spirit came to be described in the 19th century as ‘Social Darwinism’. In the survival of the fittest in human society, only industrious and imaginative individuals can succeed. Each was free and equal, society was thus egalitarian, offering equal opportunity to all and treating all on an equal footing.
Only the Red Indians and the Negroes were the social subordinates as slaves, This emphasis on individual dignity was the source of Social courage and political wisdom. English society, with its hierarchy of Lords, Dukes, the clergy, and commoners, thus came to be looked down upon. Thus, the Americans were only too eager to break the links that chained them to the backward social systems of the mother country.
To these considerations of political, social, economic, and religious differences also came to be added the geographical consideration of distance and isolation from the mother country. The thirteen colonies were thousands of miles away from the mother country. geographical remoteness, at a time when seam-ships and telegraphs were yet to be developed, led to an absence of frequent contacts.
The relationship was thus too formal for a generation of Americans, who were under nothing, except a historical obligation to continue to be loyal to a government hundreds of miles away. Economic grievances of the Americans also added to these sentiments. The commerce of the colonies was regulated by England by virtue of its political authority. It was out of obligation that the colonial people were acknowledging the authority of England over them.
But the English government regarded the colonies as its rightful property because the colonies had been set up by the English. Therefore, England was bent on getting economic benefits out of these colonies. The rules, thus framed, made the American colonies. supply those goods which England did not possess or produce.
pay a part of the English expenses on the army and navy, not to compete with English commerce, and not to grant trade rights to any other country. The colonies felt uneasy under such growing economic burdens. With the withdrawal of the danger of the French invasion at the end of the Seven Years’ War, the Americans were now under no obligation to continue the economic exploitation of them by the English.
Write the immediate causes of the American War of Independence?
At the end of the Seven Years’ War, the British government was faced with a grave economic problem. This was because of a business depression after the war as well as an increase in the national debt of England as a consequence of the expenses during the war. The victory was a matter of pride for Englishmen everywhere. British king George III and British Prime Minister Grenville had come to the opinion.
that since the war had been to the advantage of the North American colonies, by freeing them from the French danger, these colonies should help solve some of the economic problems arising out of the war. In the first place, the colonies should assume some of the burdens of their own protection. Total expenses for the defense of the colonies amounted to about 3,00,000 pounds per in.
Second place, they should contribute to the relief of the English Treasury and the recovery of English commerce. It would have been a normal policy under normal circumstances. But the situation had become somewhat abnormal owing to the 1763 proclamation of George III. In that year the British army had suppressed a mutiny of the Red Indians under Pontiac.
The British King, angry that the colonies did nothing to suppress Pontiac, passed this proclamation in 1763, forbidding “all our loving subjects” in the colonies to go beyond a particular point in the western direction. The colonial people regarded this proclamation as deliberately designed to exclude them from the riches of the West. Thus the colonists now came to resent still more keenly the attempt by Parliament to raise more revenue in North America
What are the different Acts and what are their impacts?
The first of the new revenue measures, the Sugar Act of 1764, alarmed the American merchants, because it imposed an import duty on sugar, on the colonists. The Stamp Act was passed in 1765. This act imposed a duty on various items including legal and commercial papers, liquor licenses, playing cards, newspapers, calendars, and academic degrees. These duties drained the supply of specie (gold and silver coins) and threatened the colonial economy.
These revenue measures touched off a major controversy. The colonies now boycotted all imports. In 1765 delegates from the thirteen colonies met in New York in a “Stamp Act Congress”. To them, the Stamp Act had a “manifest tendency” to suppress “the rights and liberties of the colonists”. They, therefore, came to argue that as long as they were not allowed to send their representative to the British Parliament to voice their grievances against these high-handed measures of the British government, would not pay these taxes.
Their celebrated slogan now was, “No taxation without representation”. The Stamp Act was withdrawn in 1765 on the appeals of London merchants, threatened by economic ruin, because of the American boycott. The ministry of Grenville resigned. Nevertheless, the Parliament passed the Declaratory Act asserting that the king and Parliament could indeed make laws affecting the colonies.
To King George of England, the Colonies were English property and thus he had the right to rule, control and tax them. In 1767, his government passed the Customs Duties Act (or Townshend duties), levying duties on colonial imports of tea, paper, paint, and lead. Again the merchants of Boston, New York, and Philadelphia organized boycotts. In 1770, British Prime Minister Lord North modified the Townshend duties and made only tea dutiable.
In 1773, the English East India Company attempted to sell its tea in North America. It hoped to overcome American opposition to the hated duty by making the retail price of East India tea far cheaper than that of the Dutch tea smuggled by the colonists. On December 6, 1773, to the cheers of spectators lining the waterfront, a group of Bostonians, disguised as Red-Indians, boarded three East India Company ships and threw the tea chests, worth thousands of pounds, into the sea.
They described this incident as the Boston Tea Party. British government adopted policies to suppress the colonists. The “Intolerable” Acts of 1774 closed the port of Boston and suspended the elections in Massachusetts. This added insult to injury of the “Boston Massacre” when British troops fired and killed some Americans.
What are the implications of the American War of Independence?
For Britain, the American revolution brought more severe losses than simply the loss of thirteen colonies. Britain was totally devastated by it. It dealt a great blow to her worldwide prestige and dominance. The Sun has started to set on the British empire. Her international prestige was at stake, particularly after the surrender of armies to the American forces at Saratoga in 1777 and at Yorktown in 1781.
The British used to regard themselves as invincible. The American revolution pricked the bubble of that myth. The loss of American colonies came also as a blow to the power and position of the king, at home. The British King, George III, came to lose the trust of his own people. Even his admirers now became his critics. Before the American war of independence the people of the Thirteen Colonies were regarded as “a race of convicts” who ‘ ‘ought to be thankful for anything we allow them, short of hanging”.
Now public opinion has changed in Britain. The personality and policy of George III came in for severe criticism. In 1780, the British House of Commons passed a resolution that declared that “the influence of the crown has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished”. The Prime Minister, Lord North, resigned and was replaced by Pitt, the younger who was a professional politician. He continued in office for long eighteen years and during this entire period, the King was content to play a supporting role to the seasoned Prime Minister.
By far the greatest impact of the American revolution was on international and European politics. During the latter portion of the revolution, France took the stand to isolate Britain in international politics. While its volunteers under Lafayette had joined the forces of George Washington, France came to sign a treaty with Spain (1778) directed against Britain. France also took the lead in Europe to influence other countries against Britain.
Britain stood frustrated, lonely, and humiliated. The American revolution successfully challenged the system of colonialism. All anti-colonial liberation movements that followed in the next 200 years throughout the world drew their inspiration from the American model. American revolution inaugurated an era of democracy and popular governments, All nationalist movements owed their ideals of detente fancy and equality to the American Revolution.
Even, it became one of the immediate causes of the French Revolution. The French soldiers who acted as ‘volunteers’ with the American freedom fighters, returned home and spoke in praise of the better nature of the government and living conditions of the people Ironically, France used Montesquieu’s and Rousseau’s philosophies after the Americans had done so. These two great philosophers belonged to France.
In this regard it can be said that the ideals and ideas of the American revolution influenced those of the French revolution; The American revolution was a national affair w le the French revolution was an event that influenced every nook and comer of Europe and the world. Both were, thus, events of monumental significance for mankind.
What is “Revolution” and what are the political causes of the French Revolution?
“Revolutions are not made with rose water” nor are they mere Explosions that announce them – like the first shots at Concord, the fall of Bastille, or the mutiny of the Petrograd troops that signaled the start of the American, French or Russian revolution respectively. A revolution is not an event but a process. It starts in the minds of men and releases a rush of elemental forces in them. A revolution is not made; it comes out of the past and when it comes, it cannot be avoided.
Reform is a correction of the evils and defects, but revolution means nothing less than the complete transfer of power. To quote Edgar Brown, “Revolution means that power must pass from one class to another and even if Bonapartism interrupts the process, a revolution never goes backward.” Thus revolution may be defined as the displacement of the sovereignty of the state. The French Revolution was neither incidental nor accidental. It was in the logic of history and was almost inevitable.
It was a rejection of the past ancient regime; it was a prescription for the future of popular sovereignty. It came towards the end of the 18th century and had already seen the ‘Age of Reason. ’ That is why the 18th century is known as the grave of one epoch and the cradle another. This, the historic landmark was the climax of the enlightenment of the age, for, a revolution always occurs first in the minds of men. Yet, political, social, economic, and philosophical causes also contributed no less to its outbreak.
Responsibility of Louis XIV Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette :
The Bourbon Monarchy was the root cause of all political unrest in France. The Bourbon dynasty was ruling over France. Louis XIV was the King of France during a long reign from 1661 to 1715. He was fortunate to be the King of France when France was prosperous and the people, were extremely loyal. Feudalism was dependent on royal support. France had no Constitution.
The Parliament of France had not met since 1614. It was not going to meet for 175 years, till 1789. The government was a centralized despotism. All power lay concentrated in the hands of the king. Justice was the hand-maid of the ruler. Louis XIV further consolidated his powers and came to proclaim, “L’etat test ” or “I am the State”. It was a monarchy by “Divine right”, a heritage of the Middle Ages.
The King was regarded as a divine agent, appointed to rule, therefore, the king was only answerable to God, not to his people, for his deeds and misdeeds. Louis XIV was a grand monarch. He was not only a capable general but also a competent builder. He ordered palaces to be built at Versailles, eleven miles from Paris, and he decided to rule from there far away from the dins and bustles of Paris.
Versailles became the dazzling apex of a state edifice that had cost the treasury only 24 million pounds. Versailles was a monument to Louis XIV’s thoughtless extravagance though it was the citadel of his absolutism. The expenditures were unwise, while the seclusion it brought for the monarch from the people, created artificial barriers between the ruler and the ruled. It brought fame to France in Europe, yet it increased the size and volume of French loans from other European Governments.
Louis XIV was a Grand Monarch. His successors were weak. They lacked his personality. So they became unpopular and were too weak to suppress the public discontent. Louis XV was a weakling who could not check the tide of popular disavowal of the growing poverty of the common man and the system of punishment through emergency laws, like “Letter de Cachet” by which a man can be jailed or punished without explanation or trial.
It was already too late, when he regretted, “After me the deluge”. He was succeeded by Louis XVI, in 1774. He was a good man, but a bad king was afraid of taking in dip ’pins of administration and kingship “as if the Universe is falling on me”. “God! What a burden is mine and they have taught me nothing”. “I wish, I could resign too” – reflects his attitude to kingship. He was a kind-hearted man who loved France and her people.
But time had already started blinking at the downfall of the Bourbons. He was a good judge of men and appointed capable administrators like Turgot and Necker. But no one trusted Louis XVI, for his worst shortcoming was that he had no will of his own. Though brilliant, he was unable to exert himself while his wife, Marie Antoinette was under the suicidal bliss of ignorance.
She made luxury the prevailing note everywhere. As gaiety was unconfined, so necessarily was the expenditure that kept it going. Wilful wastes thus paved the way for woeful wants. Expenditure was larger than income and foreign loans were sought to keep the machinery going. The total palace expenses f<?r 1789 alone were more than 20 million Francs.
The royal court was the tomb of the nation. Thus, despotism was changed to its own misdeeds and could not escape their consequences. The Parliament or ‘States General’ had not met for 175 years. Public appointments continued made by nomination rather than merit. Privilege, not law, was the basis of the state; expedient, not principle, the principle of its rulers.
What are the social causes of the French Revolution?
The Third Estate:
Like the monarchy itself, the social and economic foundations of the old me were beginning to crumble and slip by the middle eighteenth century. French society was divided into three traditional classes or ‘estates’. They were the nobles, the clergy, and the common people. The nobles and the clergy were the first two estates and the common people were the ‘third estate.’
The first two estates were the aristocrats who enjoyed all powers and privileges and were exempted from paying any tax to the State. Only the third estate paid taxes of various kinds because they did not enjoy privilege and bore the brunt of the wrath of the privileged aristocracy. They paid the ‘Taille’ or land tax, ‘Vingtieme’or income tax, ‘Gabelle’ or salt- tax, and Corvee’ or road tax. Apart from these, they paid ‘Tithe’ to the Church and feudal dues to the nobles. Discontent grew at these disparities.
The peasants and common people were thus groaning under the oppressive burdens of taxation, poverty, and punishment by the King through ‘Letter de cachet’, by the nobility through coercion, and by the Church through persecution. The peasants were the worst suffers. To add to their misfortune, there had been the famine of 1788, as a result of which “one-third of them had nothing but third-rate potatoes to eat, for one-third of the year – in the words of Carlyle.
The King had no time or inclination for them, “Wha is the Third Estate ?” asked Abbe Sieyes and answered, “Everything, what has it been in politics until now? Nothing. What does it desire? To become something.” The picture of the society was described in a famous way, “the nobles fight, the clergy pray, the people pay.” The Nobles and the Clergy “The revolution of 1789 was much less a rebellion against despotism than against inequality.”
The nobles and the clergy constituted one percent of the total population of France. The institution of nobility had been a feature of society since the days of feudalism. When the strong monarchy was revived, the institution was not abolished; rather the volume of its vices of exploitation had gone up. They continued to enjoy their rights, while they continued to forget their obligations to the State and people.
They continued to receive their feudal dues from the people but did not pay their taxes or dues to the State. The clergy did not lag behind the nobles. The clergy possessed estates, collected tithe from the people, threatened persecution and the Church was autonomous. The government had no control over Church or religious affairs. The Church was thus “a State within a State.” While superstitions grew, so did religious exploitation.
Gradually the intelligentsia took up the gauntlet against the Church and clergy, exposed and criticized them, and exhorted the people to rise n rebellion against in clergy. Holbach, an intellectual of the age, lamented, “Religious and political errors Have turned the Universe Into a valley of tears.” “The French Revolution was a general mass movement of the nation against the privileged classes”, said Napoleon Bonaparte.
No man could have held back those social forces, setting the dimensions of the new era. Thus, the national discontent led to the prominence of the middle class or bourgeoisie. The revolution was bourgeoisie in origin, character, and climax. The middle class is the backbone of any society. They are educated people belonging to various professions.
They were the seat of revolutionary spirit. They criticized the existing vices, promoted discussion, roused passion, and led the people to believe that the only limits to the realization of a better tomorrow were the doubts of today. The middle class became the vanguard of the revolution.
What are the economic causes of the French Revolution?
French society was characterized by various economic imbalances. The nobles and the clergy constituted one percent of the total national population. They owned forty percent of the total national wealth. They did not pay any tax by virtue of the convention of privilege. This created inevitable bitterness because the unprivileged class bore the brunt of taxation.
Short Notes on :
Foremost of these philosophers was Montesquieu (1689 – 1755). He was a lawyer by profession. This French philosopher set out to analyze political virtues. In 1748 was published his great work, ‘The Spirit of the Laws. This work was to initiate a philosophic movement against the ‘ Old Regime. ’ The work was not a figment of fiction nor a flight of fancy.
To Montesquieu, liberty is the ultimate objective of all reason or rational processes. Liberty was impossible v without, what he called, the separation of powers. The legislative, executive, and judicial ‘ powers of a State should be in separate hands. Each of these three branches should be as powerful as any of the other two. No two such branches should come together.
Thus, the government can run smoothly through this system of checks and balances. Thus, through the ‘Separation of Powers’, public liberty can come, not only to be granted but guaranteed, as well. When “The Spirit of the Laws” came to be published, it was in such heavy demand that there were 22 editions of this book in only t eighteen months. It awakened a taste for ’ political studies by bringing social sciences into the focus of literature.
It was a challenge to the Monarchy of France because by wielding all legislative, executive, and judicial authority of the State, the Monarchy was denying liberty people. Montesquieu, thus, inaugurated the attacks of philosophy and reason on the ‘Old Regime’ and its vestiges in France.
Another philosopher, though in a different mold, was ‘King’ Voltaire. He was one of the masterminds of Europe and his age (1694-1778) is known in the history of Europe as the ‘Age of Voltaire’. This philosopher was famous for his wit and wisdom. He preferred to be ruled by one lion than by a hundred lambs. Yet he was for benevolent despotism. This controversial philosopher was therefore adored by Catherine the Great and Frederick the Great in their respective courts.
But Voltaire was against weak despotism and called upon the people to rise in revolt against weak rulers. The people affectionately described him as ‘King’ Voltaire. Voltaire vehemently opposed to the corruption in the Church and called upon the French people to “crush the infamous thing”. Voltaire was “a pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night.” Tyranny of any form was opposed to him. The French took up his advice as a mandate to strip the Church of wealth and power.
But if any philosopher deserves singular credit for having fathered the French Revolution, it was Rousseau (1712 – 78). His ideas inspired the radicals of the French Revolution. He started with a sweeping generalization, very typical of the Enlightenment. Whereas nature dignifies man. Rousseau argued that civilization corrupts him; man would be corrupted less if civilized institutions followed nature more closely.
This was the central theme in “Emile”, in “Discourse on the Moral Effects of the Arts and Sciences ” as well as in his masterpiece “Social Contract” (1762). “Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains” Rousseau regretted. He, therefore, urged the people to rise in revolt against the oppressive tyranny of their despots, “sweep away all the false fabric of society.
the world of ugly wants and insolent riches and establish ‘felicity of life’ by destroying the serpent of property. Iron and com had a civilized man and thereby ruined mankind. The simplicity of ancient ways of life was destroyed by the concept of property. Rousseau raised the clarion call of “Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity”. The French Revolution of 1789 adopted the call as its swan song. Rousseau was a champion of liberty.
“Better the perils of liberty than the privileges of servitude”. Rousseau was an egalitarian society without distinctions of class or status. He stood for the universal brotherhood. Rousseau attempted to harmonize government and liberty through the theory of the social contract. While earlier theories postulated a political contract; Rousseau’s contract was social, where a whole society agreed to be molded by its ‘general will’.
Rousseau was an advocate of democracy and individualism. His idea was a free citizen in a free state His ideal State was a republic virtue’. His philosophy breathed “revolt in the name of nature, against the artificial social system” in France. It also inhaled the sweet breeze of virtue and ‘Liberty, equality, and fraternity.’Thus Rousseau gave the future revolution, its own philosophy, creed, its purpose, and its direction.
He was true, the Father of the French Revolution, though he had died eleven years before its outbreak. Apart from Montesquieu, Voltaire and Rousseau, there were other intellectuals, philosophers, and encyclopaedists who also prevailed in the French mind. Diderot and the other encyclopaedists gave the synthetic knowledge of ages to the French and thereby started discussions and aroused passion.
among other things, popular sovereignty. Helvetius projected “the self-interest” of man and society. Holbach criticized the Church, D’ Alembert, Quesnay and others inspired the French people with their writings.