Revolutionary France 1770-1848

History 280B.002

Spring 2013
Day & Time: 
M 12-2P

Traditionally, the French Revolution has been studied as the last chapter in the history of the "Old Regime." Since 1989 all this has changed. Revisionist historiography has given shape to a new unit of French history, "revolutionary France," spanning roughly from the Enlightenment through the Revolution of 1848. The purpose of this course is to give students an opportunity to develop foundational knowledge of this most turbulent of periods in French history. It will introduce participants to the major areas of research in this field--political history, social history, economic history, military history, race and colonialism, women's history, the history of religion and, not least, intellectual and cultural history. The aim is to achieve a solid understanding of the causes, course and consequences of the Revolution of 1789-99 and the successive regimes that followed: the Napoleonic empire, the Bourbon Restoration, and the Revolutions of 1830 and 1848. Not least, students will have an opportunity to engage with the major traditions of interpretation of the revolutionary era, both classical and contemporary. Reading knowledge of French is preferred, but not required.