How Do Historians View Napoleon I Emperor Of The French?

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How have historians tried to evaluate the ultimate goal of Napoleon I, Emperor of the French? With such a variety of perspectives, there is no single theory that can fully answer the breadth of the question. Instead, kaleidoscopes of opinions that span centuries from Napoleon’s reign to contemporary research give us the best analysis of his ambitions. No matter the era, historian’s opinions of Napoleon shift between admiring his achievements, in varying contexts of establishing order or reorganizing governmental systems, to criticizing his personal lust for power. This essay will discuss the varying opinions by which historians view Napoleon I, Emperor of the French, and his fundamental objective as ruler. There is a general consensus amongst historians about Napoleon’s intelligence and his ability to inspire and guide his troops with immense skill. As Michael Broers comments: “it is when historians deny him genius, creative power and acute intelligence, that they fail in their task.” Historians also agree that the French Revolution of 1789 played a critical role in Napoleon’s life by shaping his future aspirations. However, in spite of this broad agreement, there are varying views about how he used his genius in his rise to power. Historians tend to take two sides in their scrutiny of Napoleon as ruler. He is either seen as a saviour, a leader who would preserve the revolution, or a tyrant, a man who saw an opportunity to further his place in the world with the use of

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