"Anatomy of Revolution" by Crane Brinton Crane Brinton's famous work entitled "Anatomy of Revolution" published in 1965, is comparative history of the English, American, French and Russian revolutions. Crane looks at the similarities and differences between these revolutions in order to come up with what he titles "The Anatomy of Revolution." The following is a summary of Crane's Anatomy. Causes of Revolution Conditions that must be present in the outset of a revolution: 1. There is discontent amongst the people of all the social classes. 2. People feel restless and held down by unacceptable restrictions in society, religion, the economy or the government. 3. People are hopeful about the future, but they are being forced to accept less than they had hoped for. 4. People are beginning to think of themselves as belonging to a social class, and there is a growing bitterness between social classes. 5. The social classes closest to one another are the most hostile. Conditions con’t 6. The scholars and thinkers give up on the way their society operates. 7. The government does not respond to the needs of its society. 8. The leaders of the government and the ruling class begin to doubt themselves. Some join with the opposition groups. 9. The government is unable to get enough support from any group to save itself. 10. The government cannot organize its finances correctly and is either going bankrupt or trying to tax heavily and unjustly. The Stages of Revolution The Course that Revolution seems to take: 1. Impossible demands made of government which, if granted, would mean its end. 2. Unsuccessful government attempts to suppress revolutionaries. 3. Revolutionaries gain power and seem united. 4. Once in power, revolutionaries begin to quarrel among themselves, and unity begins to dissolve. 5. The moderates gain the leadership but fail to satisfy those who insist on further changes. Course con’t 6. Power is gained by progressively more radical groups until finally a lunatic fringe gains almost complete control. 7. A strong man emerges and assumes great power. 8. The extremists try to create a "heaven on earth" by introducing their whole program and by punishing all their opponents. 9. A period of terror occurs. 10. Moderate groups regain power. The revolution is over. Was it a Revolution? Examine the results of the revolution with these questions in mind: 1. Did the ideals of the revolution change as its leadership changed? 2. Were the original goals of the revolution achieved? At what point? Were these achievements conserved? 3. Which social classes gained most from the revolution? Which lost? Did the original ruling group or individuals from this group return to power? 4. How was the old political, social, and economic order of society [Ancient Regime] changed as a result of the revolution? IDEOLOGIES OF REVOLUTIONS Enlightenment philosophy brought about lasting changes in western political ideology CONSERVATISM • People who supported this philosophy at first advocated return to absolute monarchy, but came to accept constitutional monarchy by the mid-1800s. • Generally, conservatives disapproved of the revolutions of the era, particularly the French Revolution with all the violence and chaos that it brought. LIBERALISM • Liberals supported a republican democracy, or a government with an elected legislature who represented the people in political decision-making. • These representative were generally from the elite, but were selected (usually by vote) from a popular base of citizens. • Emphasis was generally on liberty or freedom from oppression rather than on equality. RADICALISM • Radicals advocated drastic changes in government and emphasized equality more than liberty. • Their philosophies varied, but they were most concerned with narrowing the gap between elites and the general population. • The Jacobins during the French Revolution, and Marxism that appeared in the mid 19th century were variations of radicalism. Revolutions in the Atlantic World Glorious to Latin American Independence The revolutions that occurred in the 100 yrs. Between 1688 and 1789 Situated the authority of government on earth rather than in heaven and thus increased the influence of the secular over the religious. Rejected the theory that governments were based on divine rights in favor for a theory that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. Saw the development of constitutional government. The revolutions that occurred in the 100 yrs. Between 1688 and 1789 – con’t. Emphasized equality of opportunity over positions based on class or heredity. • Promoted the idea of the nation-state. • Extended power to the bourgeoisie classes. • Encouraged the growth of capitalism • Ironically coexisted with continued slavery, political inequalities, colonialism and warfare. The Nature of Revolutionaries 1. Read the “Jamaican Letter” by Simon Bolivar and the introduction describing him. a. b. c. What class is this revolutionary leader from? Read the highlights from his letter and paraphrase each quote. What are Bolivar’s attitudes about tyranny, mercantilism and his position as a Spanish colonial? What kind of government does he favor for South America? American Revolution What did they want? Was it a revolution?