“The first clear expression of nationalism came with the French Revolution in 1789". Examine the statement

“The first clear expression of nationalism came with the French Revolution in 1789". Examine the statement.

  • THE political and constitutional changes that came the wake of the French Revolution led to the transfer of sovereignty from the monarchy to a body of French citizens.
  • From the very beginning, the French revolutionaries introduced various measures and practices that could create a sense of collective identity among the French people.
  • The idea of la Patrie (The fatherland) and le citoyen (The citizen) emphasised the notion of a united community enjoying equal rights under a constitution.
  • A new French flag, the tricolour, was chosen to replace the former Royal standard.
  • The Estates General was elected by the body of active citizens and renamed the National Assembly.
  • New hymns were composed, oaths taken and martyrs commemorated all in the name of the nation.
  • A centralised administrative system was put in place and it formulated uniform laws for all citizens.
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