Back to the timeline


French Revolution: economic causes and environment

The French Revolution took place in a context characterised by feelings of injustice and the over-​​concentration of power and wealth in the hands of a small proportion of the population at the expense of the majority (the Third Estate).

An important figure of the time in economic terms was Jacques Necker, a banker and, inter alia, controller general of finances under Louis XVI. Between 1776 and 1781 he sought to reduce State spending, and in 1788 attempted to resolve the financial crisis related to the State's debts by convoking the Estates-​​General. At the same time he introduced protectionist measures to tackle the food crisis caused by the wheat harvest failure.

Necker is a symbol for State economic interventionism. He is often contrasted to Turgot, controller general of finances from 1774 to 1776, member of the Physiocrats group founded by François Quesnay and advocate of economic liberalism.

En poursuivant votre navigation sur ce site, vous acceptez l’utilisation des cookies - en savoir +