You could describe him as an unpleasant bloodthirsty political stereotype. with his strong beliefs and harsh controlling ways, But jean Paul Marat believed in what he doing. yes by the end, he was probably overtaken by his strong paranoia, radical actions and influences from people around him expressed in his writing and political views. But does this make him a paranoid blood thirsty killer or a person that truly believed in what he was writing for.
Jean Paul Marat was born into a lower middle class family, which strongly influenced his beliefs in how lower class people should have been treated. He began his life with a passion for human healing and studied at St Andrews college around 1763 where he received a degree in medicine. After finishing college he travelled to London were he set himself up informally as a doctor, he made a name for himself in London charging rather exorbitant fees. And started climbing the social ladder which was somewhat his aim in life.
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While Marat was climbing he was mixing with people high in society and began to write about what he saw, this lead to his first major writing piece A PHILOSOPHICAL ESSAY ON MAN published in 1774. it was thought that his climb in society was responsible strong political views. In 1776 Marat moved to Paris with his growing reputation as a highly affective doctor and new found love of writing, which gained him the job as the personal physician to the brother of Louis the 16th the position paid 2000 French livres per year.
With his new wealth he set up a laboratory and began to write books and articles showing his research but also writing about political issues including his belief that all classes should be treated equal when it comes to execution. On the eve of the revolution Marat made the decision to stop his career as a doctor and scientist, and become a full time writer for the French people . In 1788, When the estate general was called for the first time in 175 years Marat devoted himself entirely to politics By September 1789 Marat had begun his own news paper named THE FRIEND OF THE PEOPLE .
He tended to be suspicious of those who were in power dubbing them enemies of the people keeping close watch on what they did, and reporting accordingly in his news paper. Marat never joined a specific group during the revolution, his writing usually leaned one way or another and reported different groups alleged disloyalties until he was proven wrong or they were proven guilty. he tended to attack the most influential people of the revolution In January 1790 he started an aggressive campaign agenised lawyer Dalton and was almost arrested and was forced to flee to London.
Marat returned to Paris to continue the friend to the people. And attacked many of Frances most powerful citizens, fearing that he would be arrested he was forced to hide in Paris’s sewers where he developed a debilitating skin condition. During this period Marat made regular attacks on more conservative revolutionary leaders which didn’t help his popularity amongst the powerful but only fuelled his support of most lower and middle class people . On the 26th of July 1790 he wrote an article named were done for, in it he says
Five or six hundred heads would have guaranteed your freedom and happiness but a false humanity has restrained your arms and stopped your blows. If you don’t strike now, millions of your brothers will die, your enemies will triumph and your blood will flood the streets. They’ll slit your throats without mercy and disembowel your wives. And their bloody hands will rip out your children’s entrails to erase your love of liberty forever. It was publications like these that people believe lead to events like the September massacre and altimetry lead to his death.
On the 2nd of July 1793, Marat was in his medicinal bathtub after being forced to work from home the month before because of his debilitating skin disease and was visited bt a young woman claiming she had important information. He gave her a seat by the bath tub and interviewed her but half way through she pulled out a long kitchen knife and plunged it into his right lung leading him to quickly bleed to death, the woman named charlotte Corday was of middle class but believed that Marat’s writing was causing unnecessary blood to shed and said she took one life to save 100,000 she was later executed for her crime.
So maybe he was a bit over dramatic with his predictions for the fetcher. and without seeing it, was one of the controlling political leaders that he wrote about. but what he did was worth note to the people he inspired, and may have caused death but in the end john Paul Marat was only a puzzle piece in the reign of terror and was remembered as a martyr to the lower and middle class people that believed and respected in him, Even if we now look at him with revolution and horror.