Revolutionary Europe 1789-1989: Theory and Practice

History 103B.005

Fall 2013
Day & Time: 
W 2-4P

The nineteenth and twentieth centuries in Europe were a revolutionary age, not only because of the rapid development of modern industrial society and the rise and fall of global empires, but also because political revolutions themselves proved during this period to be “history’s locomotives.” Analyzing why revolutions occur, how to start them, how to end them, and sometimes how to prevent them became one of the chief pursuits of thinkers like Edmund Burke, Karl Marx, and Hannah Arendt. This course will survey the intellectual and cultural history of the French Revolution, the Revolutions of 1830 and 1848, the Paris Commune of 1871, the Russian Revolutions of 1905 and 1917, the socialist, nationalist, and fascist revolutions of the interwar years, the failed revolutions of 1968, and finally the series of popular uprisings and “velvet revolutions” that brought an end to the Soviet Union starting in 1989. 

Terence Renaud is originally from Upstate New York. He attended Boston University and received his B.A. in history in 2007, with an honors thesis on "The German Resistance in New York: Karl B. Frank and the New Beginning Group, 1935-1945." After working various jobs in Boston for two years, he decided that graduate school was one way to escape a life of office cubicles and multiple bosses. He has been in the History Department at UC-Berkeley since 2009, where he received his M.A. in 2010 and advanced to Ph.D. candidacy in 2012. The subject of his dissertation is "Restarting Socialism: Neu Beginnen and the Practice of Democratic Revolution in Germany, 1930-1970," which traces a generation of German socialists born around 1910 who fought against Nazi dictatorship and who advocated a democratic socialism in postwar West and East Germany. He has lived in Berlin for the past year. More information can be found here: