Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

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Although festivals drew much smaller audiences during the final years of the Revolution, the government continued to celebrate them. Now, however, they tended to commemorate apolitical events: thus a festival, and hymn, devoted to the subject of…

Since the royal family’s ability to procreate was crucial to the perpetuation of the reign and thus to the continuity of the monarchy, the obsession shown in pamphlets about the bodies and sexual activities of King and Queen must be seen as having…

Although by law, political power could not pass through the Queen’s body (only male heirs could succeed to the throne in France), there was great political interest in the body of Louis XVI’s Queen, Marie Antoinette, a Habsburg princess whose…

Controversy surrounding the Queen reached a fever pitch in 1785–86 in what was known as the "diamond–necklace affair." A court schemer, Jeanne de la Motte, wove a complex web of intrigue, in which she convinced Cardinal Louis de Rohan—an…

As a result of the "libels" against the court and especially the Queen, asense was spreading that the monarchy was not fulfilling its obligations inruling over France. Demonstrating that sentiment, this pamphlet is writtenin the voice of Parisian…

Little is known about women’s grievances or feelings in the months leading up to the meeting of the Estates–General in November 1789. They did not have the right to meet as a group, draft grievances, or vote (except in isolated individual…

Condorcet took the question of political rights to its logical conclusions. He argued that if rights were indeed universal, as the doctrine of natural rights and the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen both seemed to imply, then they must…

Marie Gouze (1748–93) was a self–educated butcher’s daughter from the south of France who, under the name Olympe de Gouges, wrote pamphlets and plays on a variety of issues, including slavery, which she attacked as being founded on greed and…

On 29 October 1793, a group of women appeared in the National Convention to complain that female 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…

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was passed by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948 to provide an authoritative list of human rights that could serve as an international standard for all peoples and nations. An affirmation of…
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