Working from sources:
Activity 1: The Old Order

The three men in the picture stand for the three Estates of the Old Order. Look at the picture, then answer the following questions in groups of two.


  • Who is the man in chains?
  • Who are the men on his back?
  • Does it look as if it is easy for him to carry them on his back?
  • Does it look as if the two men feel sorry for him?
  • Discuss what you think this picture means.

Activity 2: Go back to the content pages and read about the changes that the National Assembly made during the First Moderate Stage (1789-1791).
Draw two columns in your workbook. Name the one column "Changes of the National Assembly" and the other "The Old Order". Write the changes in the first column. Next to every change, write how it was different from the Old Order.
For example:

Changes of the National Assembly The Old Order
Everybody became equal before the law and had the right to a fair trial. The absolute king could put anybody in jail without reason or a trial.

With a friend, discuss the following first stage change:
"Only men over the age of 25 got voting rights".

  • How is this different from South Africa's voting rights today?
  • How is this different from France's voting rights today?
  • What do you think this says about how women were seen in the 18 th century?
  • Try to find out when women got voting rights in France and in South Africa

Activity 3: The Radical Stage (1792-1794)
Look at the map and answer the questions that follow (the map shows what Europe looked like at the end of the 18th century).

Map A:

  • Find Prussia and Austria on the map.
  • What is an absolute monarch? And did these two countries have absolute monarchs?
  • If you were an absolute monarch and suddenly the absolute monarch in the neighbouring country next to you was killed by his own people, how would you feel?
  • Why do you think the kings of Prussia and Austria invaded France?

Look at the map of modern Europe and answer the questions that follow.

Map B:

  • Modern Prussia is part of which country / countries?
  • Does Prussia still have a monarch?
  • Which European countries still have monarchs?
  • Do these monarchs have absolute power? If not, how are they limited?

Activity 4: The effects of the Revolution
Have a class discussion on the following: Do you think that South Africa's change to a new government in 1994 can be compared to the French Revolution?

  • When you answer this, you might look at the following things:
  • What was it like in South Africa before 1994?
  • Would you say it was like the Old Order? Why?Activities
  • How did things change - was there a revolution like in France?
  • What were the changes that were made?
  • How is South Africa governed today?

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