Term Paper: Eiffel Tower Modern National Monuments

Pages: 2 (632 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Architecture  ·  Buy This Paper


[. . .] Further, many consider that its, rather humble beginnings as a World Fair publicity stunt have been replaced by its current position of the symbol of France itself -- a monument that millions of returning French soldiers from World Wars have personally identified as a symbol of home.


The Eiffel Tower is undoubtedly the most prominent symbol of France, as well as the mental representation of all things French across the world. However, one could argue that its position as a great building has more to do with circumstance than with actual merit. Indeed, many Parisians contemporary to its creation considered the building to be ugly and industrial -- a blight on the elegance of the Parisian skyline. I am inclined to agree. To be sure, the building is industrially inspired, and speaks to the industrial and commercial background of its builder. One has to imagine that the main reason the Eiffel Tower gained prominence is due to its very size (the tallest building at the time of its creation), as well as its incongruous "sore thumb" appearance that could not help but be noticed by the millions visiting Paris every year.


The Eiffel Tower is a monument that has captured the collective imagination of the world. It is without doubt, the symbol of Paris, as well as the whole of France. However, the Tower itself is extremely industrial in appearance and construction, and has gained acceptance over many years. Today, many could not imagine a Paris devoid of the structure. However, one has to wonder if this is due to actual architectural merit, or simple circumstance.

Levin, Miram R., When the Eiffel Tower Was New. South Hadley: University of Massachusetts Press, 1989.

Eiffel Tower," Encyclopedia Americana. Volume 10.

Eiffel Tower," World Book Encyclopedia. Volume 6.

Gustave Eiffel," the Hutchinson Encyclopedia. Helicon.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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