Archive for September, 2010

Olympe de Gouges

Friday, September 17th, 2010

During the French Revolution, women took a much more active role, especially in their efforts to attain equal rights and to be included in France’s new constitution. In October of 1789, 7,000 armed women marched on Versailles which eventually forced King Louis XVI to recognize the power of the Third Estate, or the National Assembly.

 One woman by the name of Olympe de Gouges, became a well-known symbol for equal rights for women. She was a commoner and self-educated, but she was responsible for the Declaration of the Rights of Women, which was like the newly written Declaration of the Rights of Men, but replaced all the words “man” in the document with “woman.” Eventually Olympe de Gouges was executed because she had spoken out for Queen Marie Antoinette who was executed at the guillotine.


The Third Estate

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

After the French and Indian War, France was in a financial crisis because loans had to be payed off and taxes, which the aristocracy and the church who were some of the only bodies that could afford the taxes, refused to pay which left the burden on French peasants. A national advisory body called the Estates General met in May of 1789 and for the first time, included members of lower classes to give their say on the economic and political situation of the country. This led to the formation of the Third Estate, which sent about 600 delegates to Versailles for the Estates General Meeting. Here is a picture which can be found in the textbook called “The Third State Awakens” in which the Third Estate is waking, arming itself, and frightening the clergy and nobility.

Eventually, the Third Estate declared itself The National Assembly of France in order to achive the right to vote in the Estates General and to get a new constitution.  King Louis XVI refused to accept the legitamacy of the National Assembly at first, which led to the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789.  The mob of Parisians who were part of the storming became known as the National Guard of the National Assembly and introduced their insignia, a flag of blue, white, and red stripes, which became the new flag of Revolutionary France.

Eventually in 1789, King Louis XVI recognized the power of the National Assembly, after about 7,000 armed women marched on Versailles.


Interwar propaganda

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

As most history and psychology students know, propaganda can have a very great effect on the thoughts and actions of the people that see them.  here is one interesting  example of the posters that were used between the World Wars.

This is a Russian poster about how the Jewish people are destroying Russia

this is from:,r:31,s:0

There will be further installments of this in the future.

British Tariffs in the Colonies

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

After the French and Indian War, the national debt in Britain was about 130 million pounds. To raise revenues and get rid of debt, King George III enforced regulations and tariffs on the colonies in North America. There were mercantilist trade regulations that did not allow merchants to trade with any other European powers, and new tax measures. These included the well known Sugar Act of 1764, the Stamp Act of 1765 which required revenue stamps on almost all documents, and other taxes on tea, glass, paper, and lead. The colonies vigorously protested these regulations and tariffs which included smuggling goods to trade with other powers by merchants, protests which often became violent, and events such as the famous Boston Tea Party in which Boston citizens destroyed shipments of East India Company Tea in 1773. Instead of laying off the colonies however, King George came down on them harder, especially after they protested, and believed that the colonies just did not want to pay the costs that helped to keep the empire, to which they belonged, going.


France vs. Britain in America

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

After the French and Indian War in 1763, France was hurt in their defeat by the British.

French and Indian War (video 6:30)

French and Indian War 2 (video 4:14)

France’s ruler Louis XVI saw an opportunity to take revenge on the Britsh by helping American colonists financially and militarily to defeat the British during the American Revolution. This was major, because at this time Britain was the greatest power in the world.

-Videos from youtube


National Personifications

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

Before the 18th century or so, our primordial-seeming nation-states had no real historical precedents. The borders were drawn by mutlti-ethnic empires for thousands of years. Countries had a national awakening largely thanks to printing press technology allowing literature in the nation’s language to be disseminated, rather than in Latin.

We all know about Uncle Sam, America’s national personification, but almost every country has an analog to him.

Britain has the John Bull, represented by a portly British gentleman. Interestingly enough, his existence extends back to the early 18th century, about as far as the nation-state itself does.

Many countries, particularly Germanic ones, have a national personification that is based on a pre-Christian hero. Germany has Arminius, who was a general that won decisive victories for the Germanic tribes in the 1st century AD. Denmark has Ogier the Dane, a legendary Viking character from the early medieval period.

Assassination Game Plan

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

The assignation of the Arch duke was organized by The Black Hand.   It was a military secretly society founded in the kingdom of Serbia.  The Black Hand organized seven members to line along Appel Quay.  Ferdinand and his wife Sophie von Cotkovato were traveling on this street for a reception at the city hall. These men were instructed to take cyanide after their shooting.  This insured that the information regarding the true masterminds would not leak.  The men who stepped up for this mission were all severely ill and their deaths were inevitable. Consequently, they volunteered to give up their lives for what they believed was a great cause.

The first assassin lined up to shoot the arch duke was Muhamed Mehmedbasic.  As the archduke passed Muhamed, He failed to execute due to the presences of authorities.  Nedilko cabrinovic was lined up next and as the archduke passed him, he flung a bomb from the crowd hoping for it to land on Ferdinand’s vehicle.  The driver saw the bomb and accelerated his vehicle.  The bomb fell on the car behind Ferdinand’s vehicle and exploded, killing the passengers and injuring the surrounded spectators.   After throwing the bomb, Nedielko consumed the cyanide; however the dose was not strong enough to take his life.  The police quickly apprehended Nedielko and Ferdinand was transported to the reception.

After the reception, Ferdinand inquired about the injured subsectors and wished to see them at the hospital.   He was instructed to stay on Appel Quay however the driver was not informed of secured avenue and made a turn on to Franz Joseph Street.  Gavrilo Princip, one of the seven assassins, was ironically walking on this street.  As the driver was backing up to get back on Appel Quay, Princip swiftly approached the vehicle and fired couple of shots. Ferdiand and his wife were both murdered that day.

After shooting the archduke, Princip pointed the gun on himself rather taking cyanide.  Pedestrians noticed this act and quickly apprehended Princip.  Once Princip and Nedilko were tortured, the other five members were also arrested and charge for treason. At the time Princip was 19 years old and could not be put to death for his actions.  He was sentenced for 20 years in prison, but due his illness of tuberculosis he died in prison.

The Assassin of Archduke
Scene of Assassination

For more detailed information please click here

Copernican Revolution

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

This is an example of Copernicus' work


Women’s Health

Monday, September 13th, 2010

Women during the 18th and 19th century were very afraid of sex because contraception was very expensive at the time and often times rare. Part of the fear also came from the thought of becoming pregnant which was the most common cause of death among women. The reason behind this was that upon the birth of the new born baby, often times the doctor’s hands were not clean, or the instruments used for unsterilized. By 1860, doctors were able to diagnose pregnancies due to new scientific techniques. The idea that pregnant women should wear corsets soon began to disappear, soon expandable lacing was created and was immediately popular. The average number of children in a family was 7. Compare that today which is around 4 for the global community and in the US is approximately 2.3. Chloroform was developed and implemented during this period was a sort of anesthetic but many religious political leaders believed that this practice was sacrilegious. The reason for this was that they believed that birth was a curse on women and that the suffering was necessary to produce a loving bond between the child and its mother.

Monday, September 13th, 2010