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I have tried Google, my textbook, and I just can't seem to find the difference between these two types of revolutions.

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    And where did you find the 2 terms? – Kentaro Tomono Mar 1 at 5:51
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Those are now unused terms, they were partially used during the American Independence but here's what they mean:

An extensive revolution is one in which events happen in a similar way in small areas as part of a larger area. What that means is that is you split that land into smaller sections you will have a directly proportional number of people revolting. Example: If you have let's say 1 million people revolting on a 1 million Km^2, in a smaller area of 100 000 Km^2 you will have about 100 000 people revolting. So this involves maintaining proportionality. Revolutions in some East Europe countries in the 90s are an example, when people went out in the street into many/most large cities of each country.

An intensive revolution means that the events happening are not dependent on the size of the territory or the amount of participants. A coup d'etat would fit such definition since in this case a small group of powerful individuals can overthrow an existing government and it does not matter how big the country is or how many others in various areas support this. This does not involve any proportionality.

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    A bit more historical context and a source or two would greatly improve this answer. – Denis de Bernardy Mar 1 at 11:08
  • Agreed, but 18th century documents are mostly found on national libraries, not g00gleberg. – Overmind Mar 1 at 11:10
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    It seems googling "intensive revolution" "extensive revolution" yields a few results. One or two might be worth adding as usage examples, to clarify the meaning further. (quizlet.com/263656019/faust-102-exam-1-flash-cards for instance seems to suggest a different meaning.) That said the main thing that left me hungry was what authors were trying to achieve by distinguishing the two and why usage got dropped. – Denis de Bernardy Mar 1 at 11:20
  • The comment on that page does not make much sense. Why would such terms be used relatively in reverse ? Probably it was used long ago due to the lack of terms, like many other words. In more recent times, the general term revolution imposed as main (for the situation where large masses revolt), while coup d'etat is preferred for overthrows done by a small group. – Overmind Mar 1 at 11:38
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    I honestly have no idea. Like OP, the notion that revolutions might be intensive or extensive was novel to me. Even after reading your answer and some cursory googling it's still not entirely clear to me what they're actually trying to distinguish and why. By contrast, the distinction between intensive vs extensive farming is somewhat clear in my mind. Industrial Texan cow farms are intensive; grass fed Argentinian cow herds fall extensive. Intuitively, the definition you gave makes a similar distinction (local/focused vs spread out), but the reasons for doing so are still mysterious. – Denis de Bernardy Mar 1 at 11:49

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