- Do you agree with Sered’s overall conclusions? Explain your answer.
- In what ways is violence celebrated in our culture? What might we do to change that?
- Why does Sered suggest that we must understand violence in the context of society and history, not just as
in individual act?
turn lead to the Tsar’s decision to raise tariffs on French goods in favour of British imports on the last day of 1810. Schroeder agrees when he states that “The central fact about the Continental system is it was anti-economic from the ground up, in spirit and essence” hence why it was bound to be unpopular, unfeasable and ultimately unsuccessful. Despite this Napoleon insisted on its implementation even after the defection of Portugal and Russia and the chaos it was causing in France. By implementing the system Napoleon had declared an economic war on Britain and so without naval superiority French merchants were unable to transport goods via the sea which in turn meant that they could only trade with Europe. The insistence from Napoleon on the implementation of his ‘continental system’ helps to illustrate how his obsession with Britain in combination with his inability to take advice mutated into both the Spanish ulcer and the Russia campaign which in turn caused his downfall. This is showcased by Smith as “‘During 1811 the French economy was in poor shape; the ministers of finance pleaded with the emperor to maintain peace so that he might recover. Napoleon’s response was short and sharp ‘Not at all! It is true our finances are disordered, but that is why we need war!’’ This helps to illustrate the view that Napoleon was in fact responsible for his own downfall, he had previously reflected in 1805 that ‘I will be good for six years more; after that even I must cry halt.’ Even before 1811 some contemporaries had observed that his ill health was beginning to impact his decision making negatively which when coupled with the deteriorating state of the French army led to Napoleon’s downfall in Europe. This could help to reinforce Napier’s view that “ her [Spain] efforts were amongst the very smallest causes of his [Napoleon] failure.” However, this view lacks validity as Napier was widely to recognised to be “Extremely anti-Spanish” by historians like A>GET ANSWER