Causes of the French Revolution Essay
The French Revolution was a watershed event that changed Europe irrevocably and ended a century of slowly increasing opposition to absolutism and the supremacy of a decadent aristocracy. The causes of the French Revolution are difficult to pin down. Therefore, we will divide them into long-term and immediate causes. Within long-term causes, we will also define intellectual, political and economic causes.
Long-Term Intellectual Causes
Before a movement can reach the proportions of an actual revolution, it requires a body of ideas that provides a programme of action and a vision of the new order to be achieved. The intellectual causes of the French Revolution are a direct result of the Enlightenment. This …show more content…
On the other hand, the founder of democracy was Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778). In its original meaning, democracy is inseparable from the idea of the sovereignty of the masses: what the majority of the people wants is the supreme law. Democracy also included the belief in the natural equality of men, the opposition to hereditary privilege, and an unfaltering faith in the wisdom and virtue of the masses.
Rousseau’s political thinking is basically contained in his Social Contract and his Discourse on the Origin of Inequality.Rousseau believed that men had originally lived in a state of nature. However, in contrast with Locke, he regarded this as