Date of Defense

4-18-2012

Date of Graduation

4-28-2012

Department

History

First Advisor

Marion W. Gray

Second Advisor

Molly Lynda-Recchia, Foreign Languages

Abstract

This thesis evaluates the influence radical journalist Jean-Paul Marat had on events during the French Revolution. Historians have viewed Marat in many different lights over time, and his influence during the revolution has been greatly debated. It would be impossible to prove Marat’s exact influence on the revolution; however, careful examination of particular revolutionary events suggests that Marat was significant in helping to incite the revolutionary crowds to action. This thesis focuses on several major revolutionary events to determine Marat’s influence, including the Women’s March on Versailles, the Champs de Mars Massacre, the Storming of the Tuileries Palace, the September Massacres, and the grocery riots of February 1793. Marat’s statements in his newspaper, L’Ami du Peuple, regarding these events are analyzed to discover not only Marat’s ideas about and possible involvement in these different events, but also to compare his calls for action with the actual events that transpired. Statements by Marat’s contemporaries and actions taken by the National Assembly against Marat also show that other revolutionary leaders believed Marat was very influential over the French public. Even Marat’s death, at the hand of a woman who claimed to commit his murder in order to put an end to the revolution, shows Marat was widely perceived as one cause of these events.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access

Included in

History Commons

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