Schedule of Readings and Classes
N.B.: Additional required readings (marked with an [E]) are available on e-reserves. A handful of other readings are on 2-hr reserve at the library. These are indicated on the syllabus.
Tues. Aug. 31st: Introduction.
- Gary Kates, “Introduction”; Albert Soboul, “The French Revolution in the History of the Contemporary World”; Colin Lucas, “Nobles, Bourgeois & the Origins of the French Revolution” in Kates, The French Revolution: Recent Debates & New Controversies, 1-50.
Thurs. Sept. 2nd: Perspectives on the French Revolution.
- François Furet, “The French Revolution Revisited” & Colin Jones, “Bourgeois Revolution Revivified: 1789 and Social Change” in Kates, 53-67 & 87-112.
I.) The Ancien Régime & The Enlightenment
Tues. Sept. 7th: Government & Society in Old Regime France.
- William Doyle, Oxford History of the French Revolution, 1-65.
- Charles Loyseau, “A Treatise on Orders,” Bénigne Bossuet, “Politics Derived from the Words of Holy Scripture,” & “A Royal Tongue-Lashing” in Keith Michael Baker, The Old Regime and the French Revolution, 13-70.
Thurs. Sept. 9th: Scandals, the “Public Sphere,” and the “Desacralization” of the Monarchy.
- Robert Darnton, Forbidden Best-Sellers of Pre-Revolutionary France, 169-246.
- Roger Chartier, The Cultural Origins of the French Revolution, 67-91. [On Reserve]
Tues. Sept. 14th: Late Eighteenth-Century Critiques of the Monarchy.
- Louis-Sébastien Mercier, “The Year 2440, A Dream if Ever There Was One” & Mathieu-François Pidansat de Mairobert (attr.) “Anecdotes sur Mme la comtesse du Barry” in Darnton, 300-89.
- “Remonstrance of the Cour des Aides (1775),” Protests of the Parlement of Paris (1776)” in Baker, 118-23.
Thurs. Sept. 16th: The “Pre-Revolution” (1787-88): Fiscal Crisis & Political Collapse.
- Doyle, 66-111.
- Kathryn Norberg, “The French Fiscal Crisis of 1788 and the Financial Origins of the Revolution of 1789.”[E]
- Dale Van Kley, “New Wine in Old Wineskins: Continuity and Rupture in the Pamphlet Debate of the French Prerevolution, 1787-1789.” [E]
II.) From Absolute to Constitutional Monarchy: The “Liberal Revolution” (1787-91)
Tues. Sept. 21st: What is the Third Estate? [Prof. Mary Ashburn Miller will lead class]
- William Sewell, A Rhetoric of Bourgeois Revolution, 1-65 & 88-144.
- Abbé Sièyes, “What is the Third Estate?” in Baker, 154-79.
Thurs. Sept. 23rd: NO CLASS (A makeup class will be scheduled)
**** Fri. Sept 24th: Paper #1 due @ 5pm ****
Tues. Sept. 28th: From Estates-General to National Assembly.
- Doyle, 123-35.
- Baker, “The Idea of a Declaration of Rights.” [E]
- “Deliberations at the Estates-General (June 1789)”, “Decrees of the National Assembly (10-11 Aug. 1789),” “Declaration of the Rights of Man & of the Citizen” & “The Le Chapelier Law” (14 June 1791) in Baker, 199-208. 226-31, 237-39 & 247-49.
Thurs. Sept. 30th: Popular Unrest & the Summer of 1789.
- Doyle, 112-23.
- John Markoff, “Violence, Emancipation, & Democracy: The Countryside & the French Revolution” in Kates, 165-97.
- “Peasant Grievances”; “Reports of Popular Unrest (July-Sept. 1789)” & “The ‘October Days,’” in Baker, 208-26 & 231-37.
Tues. Oct. 5th: The Challenge of Recreating France.
- Doyle, 136-58.
- Baker, “Constitution” & Timothy Tackett, “Nobles & the Third Estate in the Revolutionary Dynamic of the National Assembly, 1789-90” in Kates, 68-83 & 131-64.
Thurs. Oct 7th: Religion, Conspiracy and (Counter) Revolution.
- Tackett, “Conspiracy Obsession in a Time of Revolution.” [E]
- Nigel Aston, Religion & Revolution in France, 1780-1804, 140-83. [On reserve]
- “The Civil Constitution of the Clergy (12 July 1790), “The Constitution of 1791” & “National Assembly Debate on the Clubs (20 Sept. 1791)” in Baker, 239-42, 249-61 & 278-86.
Tues. Oct. 12th: The King’s Flight and its Consequences.
- Tackett, When the King Took Flight.
- “The King’s Declaration on Leaving Paris (20 June 1791)” & “The Champ de Mars Massacre (17 July 1791)” in Baker, 269-78.
Thurs. Oct. 14th: Film: La Nuit de Varennes.
Week of Oct 18th: Fall Break
**** Mon. Oct. 25th: Paper #2 due @ 12 noon ****
III.) Race, Rights, and the Beginnings of Revolution in the Caribbean
Tues. Oct. 26th: Race, Reason, and Colonial Society at the End of the Old Regime.
- Laurent Dubois, A Colony of Citizens, 30-84
- Laurent Dubois & John D. Garrigus, Slave Revolution in the Caribbean, 49-54, 57-62, 73-75, 78-85, & 108-110.
- Malick Ghachem, “Montesquieu in the Caribbean: The Colonial Enlightenment Between Code Noir and Code Civil” [E]
Thurs. Oct. 28th: Echoes of Revolution in Guadeloupe and Saint-Domingue.
- Dubois, A Colony of Citizens, 85-123.
- Dubois & Garrigus, 63-72, 75-78, 93-107, & 111-16.
IV.) Why Did the Revolution Become so Revolutionary? (1792-94)
Tues. Nov. 2nd: The Monarchy on Trial.
- Doyle, 174-219.
- Jordan, The King’s Trial, 1-78, 101-16 & 126-207.
- “The King’s Trial” in Baker, Old Regime, 302-24.
Thurs. Nov. 4th: The Revolution in Crisis.
- Doyle, 220-46.
- Antonio De Francesco, “Popular Sovereignty & Executive Power in the Federalist Revolt of 1793.” [E]
- Paul Hanson, “The Federalist Revolt: An Affirmation or Denial of Popular Sovereignty?” [E]
- Claude Petitfrère, “The Origins of Civil War in the Vendée” [E]
Tues. Nov. 9th: “Make Terror the Order of the Day!”
- Mona Ozouf, “War & Terror in French Revolutionary Discourse (1792-1794)” [E]
- Lynn Hunt, Politics, Culture, and Class in the French Revolution, 87-119 [On Reserve]
- “Make Terror the Order of the Day (5 Sept. 1793)”, Saint-Just “Report to the Convention on Behalf of the Committee of Public Safety (10 Oct 1793), Robespierre, “Report on the Principles of Political Morality (5 Feb. 1794)”, “The Revolutionary Calendar,” & “The Festival of the Supreme Being (8 June 1794)” in Baker, 342-91.
V.) Revolutionizing the Family
Thurs. Nov. 11th: Rethinking Family and Gender.
- Suzanne Desan, The Family on Trial in Revolutionary France, 15-92.
- Lynn Hunt, “The Many Bodies of Marie Antoinette: Political Pornography & the Problem of the Feminine in the French Revolution” in Kates, 201-18.
Tues. Nov. 16th: One Big (Un)Happy Revolutionary Family.
VI.) Revolution and Emancipation in the Caribbean
Thurs. Nov. 18th: Republic, Revolution, and Emancipation.
- Dubois, A Colony of Citizens, 124-221.
- Dubois & Garrigus, 116-18 & 120-35.
Tues. Nov. 23rd: The Struggle to Preserve Freedom in Guadeloupe and Saint-Domingue.
- Dubois, A Colony of Citizens, 249-348.
- Dubois & Garrigus, 138-58.
Thurs. Nov. 25th: THANKSGIVING
VII.) Ending the Revolution
Tues. Nov. 30th: Lurching Back to the Middle: The Directory.
- Doyle, 272-96 & 318-40
- Howard G. Brown, Ending the French Revolution, 23-65.
- Lucas, ‘The First Directory and the Rule of Law” [E]
- Manifesto of the Directors (15 Nov. 1795)” in Baker, 392-93.
Thurs. Dec. 2nd: The Directory, the Army, and the Struggle to Impose Order.
- Brown, 121-233.
- Desan, 249-82
Tues. Dec. 7th: The Failure of the Directory and the Rise of Napoleon Bonaparte.
- Doyle, 369-90.
- Brown, 237-324.
TBD: Conclusion—Legacies of the Revolution in France and the Caribbean.
- Dubois, A Colony of Citizens, 349-422.
- Brown, 325-58.
- Desan, 283-311.