French Revolution

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2002

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The American Revolution and the French Revolution are similar in many ways. They are also different in some aspects. For example, the French Revolution was far more violent than the American. Both the French and American Revolutions follow the same basic pattern, first a problem, then a struggle, and then a change.

Firstly, both revolutions had similar causes. They both had kings with absolute power. The Americans were displeased with taxation without representation. And the French were upset because many upper class citizens were being exempted from the taille. Also the third estate, which makes up roughly 97% of the population was only receiving one third of the votes, the Americans had an unfair voting system too. Another similarity is the usage of enlightenment ideas put into practice. The Americans made a Declaration of Independence in 1776, Thomas Jefferson included, Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Which support the ideas of John Locke.

The French created the Declaration of the Rights of Man, which incorporated "the natural and imprescriptible rights of man"�. "The people were the source of political power."� Also they both made newly revised constitutions. The French had the old regime that turned into a new constitution, and America had the Articles of Confederation before creating a new constitution. The content in them were very similar they promised, freedom of speech, press, religion, petition and assembly. The battles that marked the first acts of violence were the fall of the Bastille, and the shot heard around the world in Concord. They represent the unofficial beginnings of the revolutions because they started using force. Those are some similarities between the two revolutions.

The French and American Revolutions also had differences. For one the French Revolution was against itself, and the American Revolution was against Britain. They took place...