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It is important to be able to show how the Boston Massacre and the Storming of the Bastille affected America and France after they occurred. An article published on Marxist.org provided some useful information about the consequences of taking the Bastille. I have used Marxist.org in the past, for other projects, and find the information that that particular website provides to be accurate. The article explains the courage that came from the Storming of the Bastille. Using this article will support a comparison of how the American people began to grow weary of British Soldiers and how the French retaliated against French soldiers occupying their city.
An article from Alpha History drew parallels between the Boston and American citizens feeling of under representation to the feelings of under representation that French commoners faced. The article, titled The Fall of the Bastille explained the reason behind the attack on the prison and how that attack allowed the Third Estate of the Estates General to finally step up and take a stand against the other two estates, who monopolized votes and decisions in the Estates General. This source was important because it was the first article that mentioned French people not appreciating the taxation that they were facing. It allowed for a good starting point for comparing the Boston Massacre and the Storming of the Bastille.
There is one source from the Storming of the Bastille that mentions that Thomas Jefferson, famous for his involvement in the American Revolution, was in Paris when the Bastille was raided. He was there to watch Louis XVI meet with the Estate General, but when chaos broke, “he followed the mobs into the streets of Paris.” While it can certainly be proven a coincidence that Thomas Jefferson was in Paris when the Bastille was raided. He was an American Minister at Versaille when the prison was attacked, and like most Americans, when hearing the news of the beginnings of the French Revolution, he praised the French people for taking such drastic action.
Knowing where sources came from and how the author of those sources approached the topic is important as I continue my own research because I need to get a feel for how other researchers approached the topic of the Boston Massacre and the Storming of the Bastille. While no author that I found ever compared the two events directly, I have been able to find enough information to feel confident in building my own comparison of the two events.
The American, Haitian and French Revolution were three Revolutions that took place in the Atlantic region in the late 1700’s. The three revolutions all taking place at roughly the same time has made some believe that the Atlantic Revolutions were something that was inevitable. Had they not been connected, they still would have happened. Change was going to occur, simply because it was time for change. Had the American Revolution not sparked issues in France, the French Revolution would have more than likely occurred because of other problems that were occurring at the same time that France was dealing with a repercussion of helping America win its independence. High taxes brought about by French involvement in the American Revolution were the least of France’s problems at the time.
While the American Revolution had just recently come to an end when the French Revolution was sparked, many Frenchmen used America as a model for social reform in France. Without the American Revolution occurring first, it is possible that the French Revolution would have been a chaotic war with no attainable goals when it came to social and political structure. Thomas Jefferson was very enthusiastic about the French Revolution. “Jefferson thought the French experiment would confirm the American one and possibly spread to other parts of the world”. Even the document that Marquis de Lafayette wrote, called the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen was supposed to be adaptable to any country, and comparable to the Declaration of Independence.
The Atlantic Revolutions were a way to change the world. At the time men like Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and Marquis de Lafayette knew that. What happened in America and France would spread to other parts of the world, whether it was in Newspaper, or by word of mouth, they were confident that everyone around the world would know of the Revolutions that were changing society. They were almost hopeful that other societies would join in on the change.
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