A small-scale affair Yet, a prominent place in world history Impact of the revolution
Revolutions in the South Atlantic
First, the revolutions in South America cannot be understood outside of international politics.
Second, none was preordained. Not the story of the decline of empire and the triumph of nation-states. Nationalism did not make independent states. Often times, nation and national identity would have to be created after independence.
Third, each involved divided loyalties and civil war. There was not always a clear-cut dichotomy between empire or independence, but many different positions between the two polarities.
Fourth, cross-class and multi-ethnic coalitions emerged in several instances. There is also some evidence that popular classes participated in the revolutions. However, the process of independence was led by an elite. Many social questions went unresolved.
Finally, the chief objective of revolutionary leaders was usually to create a sovereign state rather than a democratic society. The nature of post-revolutionary rule was usually authoritarian.
The revolutions in North America, France, Saint Domingue, and South America created sovereign states that rejected privilege and began to question black slavery.
The Age of Revolutions freed the genie of revolutionary republicanism.