Massacre at the Champ de Mars: Popular Dissent and Political Culture in the French Revolution

ISBN: 0861932471

Category: Novel

Tag: History and Military


Posted on 2012-07-04. By anonymous.

Description


David Andress - Massacre at the Champ de Mars: Popular Dissent and Political Culture in the French Revolution
Published: 2000-09-05 | ISBN: 0861932471 | PDF | 250 pages | 1.50 MB


On 17 July 1791 the revolutionary National Guard of Paris opened fire on a crowd of protesters: citizens believing themselves patriots trying to save France from the reinstatement of a traitor king. To the National Guard and their political superiors the protesters were the dregs of the people, brigands paid by counter-revolutionary aristocrats. Politicians and journalists declared the National Guard the patriots, and their action a heroic defence of the fledgling Constitution. Under the Jacobin Republic of 1793, however, this 'massacre' was regarded as a high crime, a moment of truth in which a corrupt elite exposed its treasonable designs. This detailed study of the events of July 1791 and their antecedents seeks to understand how Parisians of different classes understood 'patriotism', and how it was that their different answers drove them to confront each other on the Champ de Mars.DAVID ANDRESS is senior lecturer in Modern European History, University of Portsmouth. Who was a member of the revolutionary people? And who were its enemies? How could one tell them apart? The contradictory answers to such questions would lead 'patriotic' citizen-soldiers to shoot down patriot protesters in Paris on 17 July 1791. This book explores why and how such a conflict arose, in a city aflame with political opinions, and beset by aristocratic 'dangerous' unemployed. Political unanimity was one of the great goals of the French Revolution; this study illustrates why it was so hard to achieve.

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