French Revolution Marxism Essay

1710 Words 7 Pages
The French Revolution was more than the toppling of an old regime; those who lived through the revolution immediately knew the extreme importance of the event and outsiders looked towards France with great interest. The French Revolution fundamentally changed the way about which social order and the driving force of civilization was thought and resulted in a cascading sequence of reformations of national governments. With such great magnitude inevitably followed a multitude of differing interpretations aimed at explaining the causes and implications of the French Revolution, each steeped in one’s own current time period and relevant applications. The Marxist view, which held that social classes drove an economic-social revolution towards capitalism …show more content…
However, the motivations are only half of the story; the people and classes that carry out the revolution are just as important. To align with the Marxist view, the bourgeoisie would be the primary group driving the revolution. Indeed, the actions of the Third Estate through the Tennis Court Oath supports this assertion; those gathered at the Estates General were the best and the brightest of the Third Estate and composed largely of the wealthier commoners who made a living by receiving rents and interests. Additionally, joining the bourgeoisie in their efforts to establish a meritocracy were progressive aristocrats and lower clergy. Therefore, with the presence of upper estates, the actors of the revolution were not a homogenous group, but rather a coalition of those with the same goals of interconnected economic and political reform of abolishing the old regime of feudal privileges. The aristocracy had already begun a decline in its traditional values beginning with the court system of Louis XIV. The class continued to drift away from the foundation of superior bloodline and ownership of land; many nobles were office holders and relied on bureaucratic salaries. In this way, the French Revolution was not exclusively the workings of a uniform bourgeoise class, but rather the collaboration of those who depended on the payments of the government as a means of

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