Louis Gottschalk And His Causes Of Revolution As A Theory
Louis Gottschalk believes there are several stages of the
revolutionary process. For him, the first cause of revolution
is demand for change, which is " provocation' if it results in
dissatisfaction sufficiently general to create not merely a
certain slough of subjective despair but an epidemic desire
for action. Such provocation came in the American Revolution"
). The tariff impositions and the general
satisfaction with the British treatment of American colonies
led to the Revolutionary War. He believes the second cause is
the hopefulness of change by the public, which includes a
program of reform and leadership. The intellectuals, the
revolutionaries, are an important part of the program.
Gottschalk points to "the Lockes,
the Franklins, the Otises, the
Henrys, and the
Adamses [as] furnish[ing] programs for the
(105). According to this historian,
these kinds of people are the ones who stand at the forefront
of the revolutionary movement. He is correct, some of the
people he has mentioned, plus others such as Jefferson, are
the men who will forever be known as the founding fathers of
America. As part of their leadership role, these revolutionaries must take the first step
and be prepared to "assume
leadership for the next"
(106) one. These people facilitated
the writing of American Constitution, and they are also the
ones who strongly believed in fighting the British government
for the colonies' independence. The important and the
"necessary immediate cause"
(107) of the Revolution is the
weakness of conservative forces. This one is not as visible
in the American Revolution. In fact, according to Crane
Brinton, it does not exist. However, one cannot but agree
that "in the eyes of most men, the sole justification for a
revolution is its success"
Revolution was justified by "tyranny and misgovernment"
, 84). Since there
is no doubt that the American Revolution was a success (some would say an ongoing process, but a
success as far as establishing a new and satisfying regime),
it must be agreed that the American Revolution was warranted
and truly a Revolution.