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About TED-Ed Originals

TED-Ed Original lessons feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed original? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Tom Mullaney
  • Director Sashko Danylenko
  • Script Editor Alex Gendler
  • Animator Sashko Danylenko
  • Storyboard Artist Sashko Danylenko
  • Character Designer Sashko Danylenko
  • Editor Kasia Zabavko
  • Composer Fima Chupakhin
  • Narrator Addison Anderson


Additional Resources for you to Explore
We view these events at a distance of more than two hundred years. But one contemporary observer was Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and future US president. Jefferson served as the US minister to France in the 1780s. Read what Jefferson thought about King Louis XVI. How does it compare what you learned about King Louis in the video? 

The Third Estate’s decision to break from the Estates-General was an enormously significant event on the path to revolution. Look at how it was depicted in art at the time. Art played a large role in the revolution. View the paintings of Jacques-Louis David who documented revolutionary events. 

The revolution culminated with the rise of Napoleon. Consider arguments for and against Napoleon’s actions in this TED-Ed lesson.

The French Revolution continues to be a powerful moment in human history. Read this article that uses the revolution to describe the Republican party’s 2016 presidential primary. The author compares candidates to Robespierre and Napoléon. Do these revolutionary leaders help us understand modern politicians? 

Lastly, Nick Hanauer argues we are living in a time where “the pitchforks are coming.” How does the inequality Hanauer describes compare to inequality in pre-revolutionary France?