French Revolution

Powerful Essays
1) The Napoleonic Revolution
“The transformation of French society that followed the fall of the bastille to a Parisian crowd in 1789 changed not only France but Europe forever.”

“Warfare too was transformed. The French Revolution realized the ideal of the nation in arms, and so nationalism added its force to the western emphasis on discipline. Common soldiers were now expected to display the same kind of commitment once reserved only for officers, and the new loyalties of the rank and file influenced tactics, logistics, and strategy. Eventually, Napoleon demonstrated the potential implicit in the new form of warfare and thus altered the conduct of military operations forever.” —Parker, Geoffrey, ed. “The Western Way of War.” In The Cambridge History of Warfare, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2005, 186.

2) Creation of the Modern State
"The first of the five great military revolutions introduced a degree of order and predictability ... Impersonal military discipline focused upon the state made European military organizations of the mid- to late- seventeenth century infinitely more effective on the battlefield than the feudal levies, mercenary companies, and haphazardly organized hostilities-only forces that they replaced. And the new disciplined military instruments were self-reinforcing: they backed with force the state's collection of the taxes needed to pay troops regularly. In return for pay, the state could and did demand that its soldiers maintain a disciplined obedience in garrison as well as on the battlefield; Western societies could henceforth take for granted the order and responsiveness of their military institutions." —Knox, MacGregor, and Williamson Murray, eds. “Thinking about Revolutions in Warfare.” In The Dynamics of Military Revolution, 1300 – 2050, New York: Cambridge University Press,

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