Tale of Two Cities: Roots of Revolution


The roots of the revolution, according to Dickens, are rapacious license and
oppression by the nobility. "Crush humanity out of shape once more, under
similar manners, and it will twist itself into the same tortured forms. Sow the
same seed of rapacious license and oppression over again, and it will surely
yield the same fruit according to its kind" - P347, Book III, Ch15. Dickens,
who lived in England where there were many unjust punishments and immoral
actions by high ranking officials, was basically saying that the things that
fueled the revolution in France, the crushing of humanity and rapacious license
and oppression, if used in a similar manner somewhere else would have the same
result. In this case he was probably thinking of his native country of England,
but in truth it could happen in any country that practiced the same methods that
France did.

The peasants in France were beaten down by the nobility and treated like the
scum of the earth for many years. It is surprising that the revolution did not
occur sooner than it did. It is presumable that the reason that the French
revolution was so bloody is that it was so long in coming. The rage and hatred
just kept building and then it finally popped. Like blowing up a balloon, it
will pop and all the air will gome rushing out at once after too long but you
can let the air out gradually through the place where you blow it. If the
nobility has lessened the oppression and created more humane environment then
they probably would not have lost their heads. The strength and will power of
the poor is far greater than that of others and the peasantry in France clearly
had a greater will and strength than the nobility. ""There is prodigious
strength………in sorrow and despair" Pg.306, Dr. Manette

Category: Philosophy