The Paris rebirth


TheParis rebirth



ModernWestern Civilization

CoverSheet for Essay1

**Pleasecomplete this sheet and include it with your essay. I will not readyour essay without this completed.

TITLEOF PAPER: the Paris rebirth

Yes Have you followed the guidelines for this essay?

Yes Did you proofread your essay?

Yes Do you have a thesis, a claim you make?

Yes Have you considered any objections to your thesis, to the claimsthat you want to make and the story you want to tell?

Yes Have you given evidence to support your claims?

Myessay has a logical flow Does the essay have a logical flow, or isit a mess?

Theessay sounds like a 17thcentury traveller Does your paper sound like a 17thcentury time traveller? Or, does it sound too colloquial?

Yes___ Have you gone through and taken care toget rid of PASSIVE VOICE (ie: mistakes were made or, revolution wascompleted as opposed to: “Robespierre made mistakes.” Or, “Thepeasants completed the revolution.”)

Thestrongest aspect of this paper is… ithas a strong thesis statement which is liable to numerous objections.The thesis is well elaborated and supported in the essay. Thestatements are short and well linked hence providing an excellentflow.

Theweakest aspect of this paper is… theevidence to support the argument is not sufficient.

Thingsyou could have done to improve this paper are…I wish I could get a film or documentary that clearly shows the Parisbefore and after rebirth so as to provide evidence that is credible.

ParisReborn by Stephane Kirkland

TheParis’s transformation to a metropolitan is solely as a result ofNapoleon’s efforts. Paris Reborn is book by Stephane Kirkland. Thebook revolves around the transformation that Paris underwent underthe reign of Napoleon. There are, however, numerous perceptions ofwho played a major role in transforming Paris from a ruined city to ametropolitan. Stephane Kirkland analyzed various factors that came toplay to enhance Paris’s transformation. He also highlightedindividuals who played a significant role for the implementation ofthis transformation. The document below analyzes how emperor Napoleonhelped in the transformation of Paris into a modern city (Kirkland,2013).


Thepopular known today is believed to be born in the mid-nineteenthcentury. According to the author of “Paris Reborn” attributes thebirth of new Paris to emperor Napoleon 3 as well as Haussmann.Haussmann can also be regarded as the main facilitators of thetransformation of Paris. However, he only acted as an implementer ofan already developed idea. This denies him a chance of being regardedas the chief character of the Paris’s rebirth. Emperor Napoleon 3lived with the ambition of seeing a transformed Paris. This ambitionmade him formulate an idea of how well Paris can be transformed fromits initial status to a modern city. This makes him to be attributedto as the father of Paris’s transformation despite the fact that hedid not personally implement his idea (Kirkland, 2013).

Theinitial Paris before transformation took place could be termed as acongested, dirty and dangerous city. The main transformation thatchanged the face of Paris took place between 1848 and 1870. This wasafter the then government launched an enormous campaign to buildchurches, parks, squares, streets, as well as public buildings.Significant part of what is seen in Paris today originated from thisshort period. The vision of new Paris was Napoleon 3’s. EmperorNapoleon 3 led a difficult and long climb to absolute power. However,his plans to transform Paris to a modern city failed to materializeuntil the appointment of Haussmann to be in charge of the idea’simplementation (Kirkland, 2013).

Heedlessof the controversy that was at hand, Haussmann pressed on with giantundertaking to transform Paris until the 1870 when his politicalenemies brought him down. With the Napoleon 3’s blessings, BaronHaussmann evolved Paris from a primitive maze to a modern metropolis.Stephane Kirkland made vivid descriptions related to thetransformation of Paris’s public spaces infrastructures as well asother amenities. He described this transformation as a testamentattributed to the often overlooked Napoleon 3’s reign. According toStephane Kirkland, Napoleon 3 is a man who not inspired, but alsoinitiated the transformation of Paris. The author also indicated thatbefore Georges-Eugène Haussmann became a perfect city administratorin the year 1853 Louis-Napoleon had already come up with Paristransformation plans (Kirkland, 2013).

Thiswas after seeing how Paris was in a medieval mass of narrow andfilthy streets to a new metropolis with proper sanitary facilitiesand wide boulevards. Napoleon’s plans did not, however, includedemocracy. Haussmann also revealed similar autocratic instincts. Hemanipulated accounts while avoiding an oversight from the electedofficials. He also ended up demolishing historic neighborhoods. Thehighhanded ways of Haussmann contributed to his dismissal in the year1870. He had, however, finished all the major projects such asconstruction of municipal sewer system and major avenues like Rue deRivoli, a great market at Les Hallesas well as parks such as Bois deBoulogne. These are the remarkable events that brought about thetransformation of then Paris to a new metropolis (Kirkland, 2013).

Thesetwo mid-nineteenth’s decades brought about a remarkabletransformation of Paris from a primitive town to a modern metropolis.The then initial dense and tangled neighborhoods got replaced bysidewalks, boulevards, uniform apartments, luxury hotels, sewers andpublic parks. This makeover that was astonishing was, however, led tothe displacement of approximately three hundred and fifty thousandParisians. It also razed nearly all the parts of the historic city.However, the adverse effects cannot be compared to the ultimate glorythat came along with the city’s transformation. The entire effortsfor a long period have been attributed to the implementer of thetransformation idea Eugène Haussmann (Kirkland, 2013).

However,according Kirkland, new Paris was more the Napoleon 3’s brainchildwho lived with a wish of building a modern empire. This clearly showsthat Haussmann’s contributions were just minor. The maintransformation started with the initiator of the idea of transformingthe city. This indicates that people have been praising theunwarranted hero and left the warranted one. After implementation ofthe transformation idea, Paris became an epitome of the urban beauty.This transformation is being applauded to date due to the change thattook place (Kirkland, 2013).


Itis clear that the Paris seen today is the product of mid-nineteenthtransformation. Despite the fact that Haussmann did a lot to makesure that the transformation was realized, the initiator of the ideawill forever remain to be the person to be attributed. If the idea oftransforming Paris was not, available Haussmann could have no plan toimplement. It is, therefore, evident that the rebirth of Paris issolely as a result of Napoleon’s efforts.


Kirkland,S. (2013).&nbspParisreborn: Napoléon III, Baron Haussmann, and the quest to build amodern city.NewYork, NY: Picador USA.

1 Credit where credit is due: thank you to Michael Denner for sharing this with me. Michael Denner, Cover Sheet, private communication, 21 August 2014.