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What Kind Of Primary Source Is This And What Strengths And Weaknesses Does It Have As A Source For Your Study? (Extract From The Speech Made By Jacques Roux)

867 words - 3 pages

In the first paragraph of the extract from the speech made by Jacques Roux before theFrench Convention on 25th June 1793 he has made clear several points of complaint tothe Convention on points of action that have not been taken, including that theConstitutional Act has not been given fair consideration, had not given the deathpenalty for Hoarders, and determined the freedoms of commerce. Later, (in paragraph3) he mentions where the Convention has done well but still falls short and could havedone better, in his opinion, of certain aims. So, in essence then, this is a recordeddocument of a complaint and formal accusation.As a piece of historical evidence one of its strengths is that it is dated at the same timeas the war, counter-revolution and terror between the dates of February 1793 and July1794. However, it is not clear whether the speech was pre-prepared and written byJacques Roux and read out or another person listening to the speech had transcribed(recorded) it at the time of the event. If it is the latter, the speech still seems to havethe same purpose, but it is open to question as to how faithful the speech has beencaptured. If it is a document created by Roux himself, who was one of the leaders ofthe enragés and therefore in a strong position to be a reliable source and witness, then-2-Govya Humphreysits purpose is evident in trying to persuade the French Convention to consider forsanction and adopt the new Constitution. His biases and invested interests are obviouswithin the text to quickly point out, and make a strong case against, where theConvention has failed.Question 2Are there any particular words and phrases in the document that require elucidation or special comment before you can make use of it?In the speech, to be fully understood as if you were a contemporary, there are severalwords that need elucidation. The two already given are ‘sovereign’ and ‘Capets’meaning the people of France and the family name of the Royal family. Also, anunderstanding of what it meant to be shamefully branded as a ‘hoarder (of grain) and(currency) speculator’ usually meant a one-way trip to the guillotine. The Frenchwords ‘Sans-cullottes’– meaning those without breeches, those who wear workingclass clothes (though in reality they were bourgeois) and ‘Émigrés’ - opponents of therevolution who had fled the country. Lastly, ‘big merchants’ is probably a literaltranslation from French to English – meaning a moneyed class of business financiers.-3-Govya HumphreysQuestion 3What can you learn from this source with respect to Paris during the Terror? You should distinguish, where appropriate, between witting and unwitting testimony?From the speech of Jacques Roux it can be learnt in respect to Paris during the Terror,that the districts...

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