“The Price of Liberty: Victor Hughes and the administration of freedom in Guadeloupe, 1794-1798”

In this reading for today, we had to read and analyze a document written by Laurent Dubois that analyze the price of liberty during the French Revolution. One of the aspects of the French Revolution that Dubois analyzed that caught my attention was the issue of the “active” vs “passive” citizen. Dubois described a passive citizen as one who is protected under the laws but is not qualified to vote while an active citizen can participate in the entire voting process and be elected as well. It was interesting to me how during the French Revolution there was a divide for what defined a citizen. It is this division that also to me shows how there was a divide as a nation in France. My question is, can a nation truly be considered one if there is active vs passive citizens?

2 Replies to ““The Price of Liberty: Victor Hughes and the administration of freedom in Guadeloupe, 1794-1798””

  1. In my opinion it is impossible for a nation to last in which citizens are either born into a active or passive role. This will end up creating to much divide within the society leading to either new laws in place or the collapse of the society itself. One could argue that there are things that one could do in order to lose the right to vote but that right should not be taken away based on the class you are born into or the color of your skin when you where born. Many French leaders at the time might argue that women for example should not be active citizens. This seems hard for me to comprehend since now we know that women are very important to overall functioning society. Women during this time might not have worked the same jobs as men , but there jobs at home of raising children and maintaining the household were just as important.

  2. I tend to agree with Sam, while I do think that a nation can have different view points like political parties that some may consider dividing I do not thing a nation can have multiple levels of citizenship. I believe its immoral to treat citizens of a nation like paying members of a club where some get more opportunities based on social and or economic status. There is and will always be envy in a nation wether it be due to economic gaps between citizens or opportunity conflicts due to patronage. These are issues all nations come across but if a nation is classifying citizens in a way that Dubois states it is destined to have a revolt.

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