Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

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This fragment from a memoir by Charles Alexandre shows the anger of women when confronted by a sugar shortage. They readily attributed the shortage to hoarding by greedy merchants. This document also shows the new importance of colonial products such…

In the rioting over prices of February 1793, women appealed first to the authorities, showing that they intended to communicate directly with their representatives in the municipal government of Paris. By explicitly referring to themselves as…

The reports of the Paris police provide firsthand information about conditions in the city and about the leading role of women in food disturbances.

The regulations demonstrate that women wanted to be taken seriously as political participants; they wanted their club to be like the clubs set up by men.

Unfortunately the only first-hand account of the meetings of the women’s club comes from notes taken by Pierre–Joseph–Alexis Roussel, published in a volume of memoirs in 1802. His account makes fun of the women’s club for discussing the…

Louis–Marie Prudhomme founded the Révolutions of Paris, one of the best–known radical newspapers of the French Revolution. In this editorial, he responds to women’s criticisms of the Revolution and outlines a theory of women’s "natural"…

In the discussion of a new constitution in April 1793, Jean–Denis Lanjuinais spoke for the constitutional committee. He admitted that the question of women’s rights had aroused controversy.

Claire Lacombe, an actress and one of the leaders of the Society of Revolutionary Republican Women, published a pamphlet to counter charges made against her and the club. By September 1793 the revolutionary government had begun to harass the leaders…

On 29 October 1793, a group of women appeared in the National Convention to complain that women militants had tried to force them to wear the red cap of liberty as a sign of their adherence to the Revolution, but they also presented a petition…

In a follow–up to Fabre d’Eglantine’s speech on 29 October, Jean–Baptiste Amar proposed an official decree on 3 October forbidding women to join together in political associations. A deputy tried to argue that this notion ran contrary to the…
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