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What were the differences between the French and Russian revolutions?  I need at least 10 differences.

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Scott David eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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This is a tricky question, because there are so many ways in which the French Revolution and Russian Revolution were different from each other; it's difficult to discern how to organize a clear and coherent response. As a possible starting point, though, I would note that, while there were tensions within France before the Revolution unfolded, it had nothing approaching the depth of subversive activities that you would see in Russia, where Marxists and anarchists had been politically active going back into the 1800s. For example, Robespierre did not have a career as a professional revolutionary the way Lenin did.

You might also consider that the two Revolutions emerged from very different contexts. The Russian Revolution coincided with the First World War, and has to be understood accordingly. The First World War was a traumatic moment for Russia, who faced higher casualties than any other participant, and was thrown into severe economic strain. Furthermore, the second stage of the...

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Alec Cranford eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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zumba96 | Student
  • The French turned into a democracy after the revolution while the Russians turned communist.
  • The Russians also had a pre-revolution that led up to the full revolution, while the French did not. 
  • The French revolution lasted ten years, between the years of 1789 and 1799.
  • he Russian revolution lasted a much smaller time frame and consisted of several small scale revolutions.
  • The French wanted to abolish their previous totalitarian regime so that they would all have the opportunity to live and get rich in a capitalist democratic 'free' state. 
  • The Russians wanted to abolish their previous totalitarian regime so that they would all have the necessities of life and live equally without the need to acquire material wealth as happiness. 
  • Where it took place
etotheeyepi | Student

I have no idea if I understand this well enough to answer this question, but here is my two shekels, which may be more of a list of similarities rather than differences.

1) One happened in France.  One happened in Russia.

2) One tried to apply Voltaire and Rousseau.  The other tried to apply Marx.

3) One happened in eighteenth century. The other happened in in twentieth century.

4) One overthrew Louis XVI.  The other overthrew Nicholas II.

5) One resulted from a shortage of wheat. The other resulted from a shortage of potatoes

6) Napoleon gained control France. Stalin gained control Russia.

7) Napolean gained control of Western Europe. Stalin gained contol of Eastern Europe.

8) French historians consider Napolean a hero. Russian historians consider Stalin a villain.

9) Historians think of the French Revolution as the transition between the Enlightenment Era and the Romantic Era.  I don't believe anyone marks the Russian Revolution as a similar change.

10) The French Revolution resulted in mass murder in France.  The Russian Revolution resutled in mass murder in Cambodia, Cuba, China, North Korea, Russia, and Ukraine.

11) The French Revolution spread ideas of liberty and equality around the world.  The Russian Revolution spead ideas off tyranny and equalily around the world