How Is Jefferson And Robespierre Similar To The Justification Of Terror

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Two of the most important documents, when discussing the history of democratic revolutions, are Robespierre’s “Justification of Terror” and the American Declaration of Independence. Besides being written in the name of democracy around the same time period, however, both documents appear to be very distinct. While one concerns one of the most glorious moments of American history, the other is a controversial speech defending the use of terror. Although both documents appear to be very distinct, in this paper I will argue that there are, in fact, many subtle similarities in the way both records were written and the messages they convey. The language used, and the form both Jefferson and Robespierre used to construct their respective arguments bear many similarities - and notably, share the same fallacy. Jefferson begins the Declaration of Independence by explaining why the…show more content…
Using one’s own arguments as a justification for one’s actions can hardly be considered legitimate, despite what both documents would make us think. Their circular reasoning and empty words could be considered faulty and ignorant at best, and manipulative at worst. Although both texts are extremely relevant and important for history, we cannot deny that they both contain some logical and linguistic fallacies. Nevertheless, nothing changes the impact those documents had. Despite the fact that Jefferson and Robespierre both created the principles used to justify their actions, it is still relevant to note that those principles prevailed. In America, people’s unalienable rights are still considered by many to be not only legitimate, but also indispensable. The phrase became now a notorious American motif. Regardless of how the arguments were formulated, they were both important in the shaping of modernity and the political life
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