Русский | English

Peoples against the French Revolution

Tchoudinov Alexander

   The author offers a partial summary of the results obtained by the laboratory “The World during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars” (Institute of Universal History of Rassian Academy of Sciences) in the realization of a long-term research project “Social mechanisms of mass protest movements in the era of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Empire”. A comprehensive study of the various types of mass movements makes to treat with great caution the widespread assertion that the French Revolution was made by the people, by which it is usually meant the peasantry and the urban plebs. Even the plebs mass protests, normally associated with the Revolution, did not usually pursue far-reaching political goals; they were merely a direct response to the information events that caused a surge of collective fear in a situation of general dissatisfaction with the current economic difficulties. However, even these relatively “revolutionary” events bear no comparison in their scope and duration with the mass popular movements directed against values and ideas of the French Revolution; such movements as the French Vandée, Italian Insorgenze, Egyptian Jihad and others seized entire regions and continued for years.

Keywords: traditional society, the liberal-democratic paradigm, the French Revolution, mass protest movements, la Vendée, Insorgenze, Egyptian campaign 1798-1801, Patriotic War of 1812.
Link: Tchoudinov A. Peoples against the French Revolution // Annuaire d'études françaises 2016: Les révoltes à l'époque de la Révolution française et du Premier Empire / Annual of French Studies 2016: The Popular Insurrections in the Age of the French Revolution and the First Empire.М. P. 5-35.