The social factors contributing to the start of the French Revolution included social stress from a large population as well as the intrusion of capitalism into everyday life and the consequent social disparities. An economy in crisis following France's involvement in the American Revolution as well as two decades of poor cereal harvest and drought, leading to an explosion in the price of bread, were also to blame.Continue Reading
King Louis XVI and his predecessor were also known for their extravagant spending habits, which had left the country close to bankruptcy. As a result, taxes were necessarily raised to salvage what was left of the economy. In a show of their dissatisfaction and despair, the people of France turned to striking, rioting and looting.
The living conditions in France were especially poor for people living in the cities, despite the fact that among these were the wealthy and middle classes. The air was polluted and the water quality was poor, and urban populations were likely to have significantly shorter life spans than those living in the country.
In addition to their poor health, city workers were also subject to strict and unfair conditions of employment. Nepotism was rife within the industries, and social climbing or promotion was difficult achieve for those not born into the right family.Learn more about French Revolution
The French Revolution of 1789, while based on the ever-growing popular Enlightenment ideals put forth by philosophers such as Descartes, Voltaire, and Diderot, ultimately failed because the change in regime created a severe power vacuum. This allowed radicals to seize power and sow chaos within France.Full Answer >
The French Revolution was a war led by the French people against the monarchy. It involved untold numbers of commoners and the upper echelon of French society.Full Answer >
The primary significance of the French Revolution was that it removed power from a small group of elite rulers and established a democratic leadership representing the French citizenry. Much like the American Revolution that shortly preceded it, the French Revolution was focused on eliminating imperial rule.Full Answer >
The French Revolution had an impact on the politics and laws of the United States. It was also a primary motivator behind the passage of the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798.Full Answer >