MY FINAL HISTORY EXAM ESSAYS

MY FINAL HISTORY EXAM ESSAYS - MK Page 1 of 13 Mata...

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MK Page 1 of 13 Mata Kranakis Prof. Brian Cowan T.A. Greg Bouchard April 15, 3008 History 215 Final Examination: Absolute Monarchy, the Results of a Revolution, and the Rise of European Integration
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MK Page 2 of 13 Essay I – Selection 3 An Analysis of Absolute Monarchy through Louis XIV Absolute monarchy, defined in Louis XIV’s statement, “L'état, c'est moi,” 1 asserts order by creating a vision of a society whose center is a single ruler, and whose subjects’ only vision was to realize his will. In order to understand whether absolute monarchy is despotic, an assessment of Louis XIV, considered the most absolute of all monarchs, is critical. Louis XIV played a large role in the economics, religion, and culture of his king- dom but his reign can only be considered absolute on the surface. Although Louis ex- pertly manipulated the French aristocracy, and his skillfully selected ministers, coun- cilors, and intendants , Louis’s rule was not so absolute as to exert oppressive control over the daily lives of his subjects as in the police states of the nineteenth and twentieth cen- turies. 2 His absolutism functioned primarily on a national level through politics, and the regulation of religion. Even at the height of his power local institutions continued to exert administrative authority at the local level. Furthermore, although Louis’s authority was absolute, his power was not since he was limited to the law of God. 3 For Louis XIV, the maintenance of religious harmony was considered an import- ant area of monarchical power, and Louis had relative success in maintaining absolute control in this area. Louis was in conflict with the French Huguenots because he did not want to allow Protestants to practice their faith in the largely Catholic France. Louis be- lieved in the motto, "one king, one law, one faith," 4 and he felt that the existence of this 1 Donald Kagan et al. The Western Heritage: Combined Volume, TLC Edition (5th Edition) ( Al- exandria, VA: Prentice Hall, 2006) 494. 2 Ibid 496. 3 Theodore Laueet al, Sources of the Western Tradition, Vol. 2: From the Renaissance to the Present . (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2006) 22. 4 Davies 494.
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MK Page 3 of 13 minority undermined his own political authority. His anti-Protestant policy aimed at con- verting the Huguenots to Catholicism began mildly by offering rewards, but by 1681, it escalated to a policy of forced conversions. In October 1685, Louis issued the Edict of Fontainebleau revoking the Edict of Nantes, and destroying Huguenot churches and schools. 5 As a result, the majority of the Huguenot population left France. Although France lost people who had commercial and industrial value for France, Louis XIV’s ab- solute control over religion was successful. The theory of absolutism is embodied in the "theater of monarchy," the public
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MY FINAL HISTORY EXAM ESSAYS - MK Page 1 of 13 Mata...

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