The French Revolution

890 Words Feb 29th, 2016 4 Pages
By providing a mostly chronological style to her text, Neely seeks for her book to act as an “introduction to the French Revolution” by acquainting “the reader with the most important events, the prominent people, and the essential terms (xvi).” In her introduction, Neely discusses how the Revolution is still a hot-topic discussion amongst French-people and even how at the Bicentennial, there was still no definitive answers as to the “how” and “why” of the Revolution. Neely’s text is a great supportive source for a typical undergraduate French Revolution survey course. Neely utilizes a variety of general history sources, such as the Oxford History of the French Revolution and dictionaries such as Samuel Scott’s and Barry Rothaus’ 1984 text Historical Dictionary of the French Revolution. She also utilizes a variety of sources focusing purely on King Louis XVI, the French armies, and the various revolutionaries. I believe this combination of general and specific sources allowed for Neely to provide the reader with the most complete introductory narrative of the French Revolution.
Class is the primary theme that is explored through the first three chapters of Neely’s text. She begins the book with chapter one introducing the reader to the Ancien Regime, providing the reader with the much needed background information of understanding how things were in France until the Revolution discussing issues such as Salic Law (1), the three estates, and how the Estates’ General function…
Open Document