Women's Roles and Rights in the French and Russian Revolutions

Topics: Human rights, French Revolution, Women's rights Pages: 4 (1130 words) Published: February 17, 2013
Russia And France:

What were the women’s roles and Rights in the two Revolutions?

When one speaks of the French and Russian revolutions, they do not pay particular attention to women, but more to the revolutionary men. After all, most history books only mention the King, the soldiers, the condemned, and perhaps the Queen. But where are the mothers, daughters, sisters and wives? Even with characters such as Olympe de Gouges, (who was in fact a woman), and Marie-Jean Roland, (also a woman), who inspired the French women to take part in the revolution; women still did not have much influence in the revolutions and after that. So, what did women throughout the revolutions? And even though the Russian and French revolutions both strongly implicated human rights, did they start the long march to women’s rights, if at all?

During the French revolution, the women had virtually no privileges, no property and no jobs. There were primarily mothers and housewives. In Russia, though, during the 1917 Red revolution, women had nigh on the same rights as the men. They took leading roles in the fights, acting as army generals, and performing coups (Associated Content 1). In France on no occasion did women have this extent of power among men. The closest they ever reached to having a say in the Revolution was their march to Versailles, and attempted dispatching of the Queen, Marie-Antoinette.

Even though it has been said that women were not a major part of the French Revolution, it is not necessarily true. “Without the service and intelligence women brought to France in this era, the revolution would not have progressed as it did.” (Write Work) The French women had given so much of their time to their husbands and fellow revolutionaries, and also supported many new ideologies; that, indeed, if it had not been for the women, the revolution really would never have had so much headway. The women were nevertheless oppressed by their male peers during the...
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