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Regulation of Marriage and the Anti-Footbinding Society

Teaching
The tensions that evolve between traditional ideas and values and newly emerging ones are key to understanding a number of issues in world history, and never more so than when examining responses of Eastern states like Russia, Japan, and China to Western industrialization and incursions. Each of these societies faced serious dilemmas provoked by encounters with the West, and each structured its... Read More »

"Admission of Jews to Rights of Citizenship," 27 September 1791

Source

After several tumultuous discussions about the Jewish communities still excluded from political rights, the National Assembly finally voted to regularize the situation of all the different Jewish communities on 27 September 1791. Adrien–Jean–François Duport (1759–98), a deputy of the nobility of Paris, proposed the motion. The deputies shouted down those who attempted to speak against it, and... Read More »

"Constitution of 1793"

Source

The primary task of the Convention, when seated in the fall of 1792, had been to draft a new, republican constitution. Only after the purge of the Girondins, however, did the Convention complete this task, with what became known as the Constitution of 1793 or sometimes the "Montagnard Constitution." Particularly notable was the commitment to political democracy; universal manhood suffrage with... Read More »

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"I Must Of Course Have Something Of My Own Before Many More Years Have Passed Over My Head": Sally Rice Leaves the Farm

Source

From the rocky soil of Vermont's hill towns, many young men and women in the 19th century went looking for new opportunities. Often they made a series of moves between farm, factory, and city. Their leave-taking pitted the responsibilities of maintaining family farms against the new attractions of financial and social independence. Sally Rice, born in 1821 in Dover, Vermont, was typical. In... Read More »

"Letter from a Gentleman in Paris to His Friend in London" (1757)

Source

The news of Robert–François Damiens’s attack on the King and his subsequent trial spread rapidly and generated great interest across France and all of Europe. This pamphlet, published in London, describes for English readers the goings–on in Paris, especially the public outpouring of sympathy for the King and the general hostility toward Damiens. Damiens, even for this English observer, was... Read More »

"Letter to Fréron: Émigrés Return" by Thérèse Bouisson

Source

Once in power, the Directorial government appeared poised to preserve the gains of the Revolution while undoing what some considered the excesses of the period of Jacobin ascendancy. Yet precisely what the Revolution’s gains were—beyond the elimination of the monarchy and remnants of feudalism—remained unclear. One perspective, that of the émigré nobles, held that the fall of the Convention... Read More »

"Petition of the Jews of Paris, Alsace and Lorraine to the National Assembly" (28 January 1790)

Source

When the Jews of Paris and the eastern provinces presented their case to the National Assembly, they leaned heavily on the precedent of granting full rights to the Protestants and on the language of human rights philosophy. They insisted that the Jews should be treated no differently from anyone else and refuted one by one all the customary prejudicial arguments used against the Jews, such as... Read More »

"Terror Is the Order of the Day"

Source

Responding to pressure from the sections, the Convention voted on 5 September 1793, to declare that "Terror is the Order of the Day," meaning that the government, through internal "revolutionary armies" that were formed two days later,should and would use force against its own citizens to ensure compliance with its laws, including the law of the Maximum.

"The Declaration of Pillnitz"

Source

In response to the "Padua Circular," King Louis’s brother, the Count of Artois, a leader of the émigré nobles, expressed his support for Emperor Leopold II of Austria. Leopold, in conjunction with Prussian King Frederick–William III, then issued this "Declaration of Pillnitz"; the "resolution to act quickly" was perceived as a declaration of war on France for the purpose of ending the... Read More »

"The King of the Third Estate" (June 1789)

Source

The King’s decision to accept the idea of a "National Assembly" and to order the deputies of all three orders to debate and vote as a single body met with sharp opposition within the royal entourage, especially among the aristocratic faction close to the Queen. In this passage, one of these hard–liners, the Countess d’Adhémar, expresses contempt for the idea of allowing any significant role... Read More »

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