Course Schedule

Class meetings Tues & Thurs 3:00 to 4:15 PM in Brunet 133

Be prepared for every class by having read the primary sources closely and secondary reading for the main argument. Bring copies of the reading with your notes and questions for discussion. See BB for tips on reading strategies.

1/14 Class Cancelled

1/16 Revolution and modernity. Interpreting the French Revolution in a global perspective

READ: “Preface” in Lynn Hunt and Jack R. Censer, The French Revolution and NapoleonCrucible of the Modern World (Bloomsbury 2017), pp. viii-xiii. [herein H&C]


CHOOSE/CREATE a social profile for Lives and Voices by Monday, 1/20. First post due on Friday, 1/24.

1/21 Causes – The Financial Crisis (1787-1788)

Primary Sources on BlackBoard (BB):
1) The Parlement of Paris (1770 & 1776)
2) Necker’s Preface to the King’s Accounts (1781)

Secondary Reading:
1) Hunt & Censer (H&C) Chapter 1, pp. 1-17
2) Lynn Hunt, “Global Financial Origins of 1789” (on BB)

1/23 Causes—The Constitutional Crisis (1787-89)

Primary Sources:
1) Dwyer and McPhee’s Sourcebook (D&M), Ch 1 “Ancien Regime Challenged” pp. 1-15. Lamoignon on the principles of French monarchy, 19 November 1787; Memoir of the Princes of the Blood, 1788; Cahiers des doléances for Berry

2) Document 1.1 “Complaints, grievances and protests of the parish of Saint-Beury in Burgundy” in H&C, pp. 35-36.

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 1, pp. 17-25

**Reading Analysis 1: Prepare a short (300 word) response to question 1 OR 2 on page 37 of H&C, using the relevant grievances in D&M and H&C to answer the question.

Class Role Play
Act 1: Calling and Convening the Estates General (August 1788 to May 1789)

 L&V Entry 1, due by Friday at 5 pm (required)

1/28 The Liberal Revolution

Primary Sources:
1) Jean-Jacques Rousseau, “Social Contract” (on BB)
2) Sieyes, What is the Third Estate? January 1789; Tennis Court Oath; August decrees; The Declaration of Rights of Man & Citizen in D&M, pp. 3-5, 16-18, and 24-28

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 1, pp. 26-27, 31-33

Class Role Play
Act 2: Forming a National Assembly May to June 20, 1789
Act 3: Deciding on Rights and Liberties – August 1789

L&V Entry 2, due Friday at 5 pm (required)

1/30 Revolutionary Journées of the People

Primary Sources:

  • “Revolutionary Action” in D&M Chapter 2, pp. 18-23. Storming the Bastille; The Killing of Bertier and Foulon; Arthur Young; the Great Fear
  • “Creating a Regenerated France,” in D&M Chapter 3, pp. 28-30. Women’s march on Versailles.

Secondary reading:

  • H&C Chapter 1, pp. 28-31, 33-39
  • Rudé, “The Crowd in the French Revolution” (on BB)

2/4 Claiming Liberty and Conferring Rights (1790-92)

Primary Sources:

  • “Inclusion and Exclusion” in D&M Chapter 4, pp. 30-42. Law on inheritance, 1790; Festival of the Federation, 14 July 1790; Le Chapelier Law; Petition from Jewish communities, 28 Jan 1790; Civil Rights for Free Blacks, 15 May 1791; Olympe de Gouges on Women’s Rights, 1791;
  • Decree Conferring French Citizenship on Foreigners, August 1792 in D&M Chapter 11, pp. 90-91.

Secondary Reading:

  • H&C Chapter 2, pp. 41-46, 53
  • Felicia Gordon, “The Gendered Citizen: Marie Madeleine Jodin (1741-1790)” on BB

2/6 Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1790-91)
Primary Sources:

  • “Church and the Revolutionary State” in D&M Chapter 5, pp. 43-50. The debate on Church reform, May 1790; Decree on the Civil Constitution of the Clergy, 12 July 1790; The clerical oath, 1790-91; The Papal bull Charitas, 13 April 1791.

Secondary Reading:

  • H&C Chapter 2, pp. 46-52
  • Timothy Tackett, “The French Revolution and Religion to 1794” (on BB)

L&V Entry 3, due Friday at 5 pm (required)

Proposed StoryMap Dates & Locations for First Phase due today

2/11 The King takes Flight (June 20-21, 1791)
Primary Sources:

  • “Monarchy and Revolution” in D&M, pp. 51-59. The King’s proclamation on his flight from Paris, 21 June 1791; Reactions to the King’s flight; Barnave on ending the Revolution, 15 July 1791; The massacre on the Champ de Mars, 17 July 1791; The Constitution of 1791
  • Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 2, pp. 53-62

L&V Entry 4 due Friday at 5 pm (optional)

Three Entries for Digital TimeLine Phase 1 (pre-August 1792) due today

2/13 Birth of the Convention and Declaration of War (1792)
Primary Sources:

“The Revolution at War” in D&M, pp. 60-67. The renunciation of foreign conquests, 22 May 1790; The decree against emigres, 9 November 1791; The declaration of war, 20 April 1792; Decree of “la Patrie en danger’, 11 July 1792; The deportation of non0juring priests, 26 August 1792

“Robespierre and Brissot clash on the war, December 1791” in H&C, pp. 73-75.

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 2, pp. 62-75.

**Reading Analysis 2: Write your response to questions 1 and 2 on page 75. You must draw on at least two of the assigned primary sources and include an additional question for further investigation. Write no more than 300 words for each question.

2/18 The Fall of the Monarchy (August to Dec 1792)
Primary Sources:

  • The Brunswick Manifesto; The Decree Concerning the King; The Indictment of the King, Louis Capet’s Trial and Execution; A provincial response in D&M, pp. 68-79.
  • Document 3.1 “The Trial of the King” in H&C, pp. 108-110.

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 3, pp. 77-84

**Reading Analysis 3: Using questions 1, 2 and 3 on page 110 of H&C to guide your response, write your own question and a 500-word response to the Trial of the King.

2/20 War at Home and on all Frontiers

Primary Sources: The young republicans of La Rochelle, Jan 1793; Decree conscripting 300,000 men, Feb 1793; Revolt in the Vendée in D&M pp. 91-93, 97-102.

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 3, pp. 84-87

L&V Entry 5 due Friday at 5 pm (optional)

Three StoryMap Entries (Revised & Resubmitted) Accepted

2/25 The First Republic and the Enemies Within (Aug 1792 to April 1794)

Primary Sources:

  1. “Definitions of the sans-culotte, the moderate, and the aristocrat” 1793”;
    Marat, “The People’s Friend”; Hébert, “Le Père Duchesne” (on BB);
  2. “The Republic at War” in D&M pp. 93-96. Constitution of 1793
  3. “The Terror at Work” in D&M pp. 103-106. Law of Suspects; Robespierre on revolutionary government, 25 December 1793; Letter of a condemned prisoner, 2 March 1794.

Secondary Reading:

H&C Chapter 3, pp. 87-99



3/3   Revolutionary Political Culture

Primary: “A New Civic Culture” in D&M, pp. 84-89. Divorce law, 20 September1792; The celebration of revolutionary heroes; Uniform weights and measures, 1 August 1793; De-Christianisation in the provinces; Bouquier law on education.

Secondary: H&C, pp. 100-103

3/5  The Fall of the Jacobins (July 27, 1794)

Primary: “The Terror at Work” in D&M pp. 107-113. Law of 22 Prairial, 10 June 1794; The Revolutionary Tribunal at work, Jun 1794; The fall of Robespierre, July 1794

Secondary: H&C Chapters 3 & 4, pp. 104-119.

L&V Entry 6 due at 5 pm on Friday (optional)

3/12 & 3/14 SPRING BREAK — Read Anatole France, The Gods Will Have Blood

 WEEK 10
3/17 The Cult of Civic Virtue
The Gods Will Have Blood by Anatole France. Discuss chapters 1-5

3/19 Surviving the Terror
Secondary: The Gods Will Have Blood by Anatole France. Discuss chapter 6-10

**Extended Reading Analysis 4 on Anatole France. Write a book review from the perspective of a French historian (see “Preface” to Hunt and Censer). Aim for 800 words. Due no later than Friday at 5 pm. UPLOAD TO BOX FOLDER “RA4”

3/24  Finding Stability After the Terror (1794-99)
Primary Sources:

  • “The Thermidorian Reaction” in D&M, pp. 115-120. The Guilded Youth attack on the Jacobin Club, November 1794; De-martyrization of Marat, February 1795; The White Terror in the Provinces, 1795
  • “The Directory” in D&M, pp. 121-127. Boissy d’Anglas on the Constitution of 1795; Mme de Stael on the Directory, 1795-97; the journées of 12 and 13 Germinal, 1 and 2 April 1795; A complaint from the citizens of Besançon, 4 April 1798; A police report on the climate of fear and uncertainty

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 4, pp. 119-127

3/26 Napoleon’s Italian campaign (1796)

Primary Sources: “Bonaparte” in D&M, pp. 128-133. Proclamation to the Army of Italy, 26 April 1796; Two accounts of the battle of Arcola, November 1796

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 4, pp. 127-136

L&V Entry 7 due Friday at 5 pm (optional)

Two, Proposed StoryMap entries for Phase 2 (Post-Aug 1792) due today



3/31 Napoleon’s Rise to Power (July 1798 – November 1799)

Primary Sources:

  • “Bonaparte” in D&M, pp. 133-139. Proclamation to the people of Egypt, 2 July 1798; Bonaparte as Jewish Messiah, 28 February 1799; Justifying the coup of Brumaire, 10 November 1799
  • Document 4.2 “Invasion of Egypt” in H&C, pp. 144-146.
  • “The French Occupation of Cairo” in Napoleon: A Symbol for an Age, pp. 48-51 (on BB)

Secondary Reading:

  • H&C Chapter 4, pp. 136-147
  • Ian Collier, “Egypt in the French Revolution” (on BB)

**Extended Reading Analysis 5: Write a structured argument in response to question #3 on page 146 using Document 4.2 and at least one other assigned primary source in D&M, and two, direct references to Collier’s essay. 1,200-words due Friday by 5 pm.

4/2 Napoleon and the Consulate (1802-1804)

Primary Sources:

  • “Rule by Plebiscite” in Chapter 18 of D&M, pp. 149-153. The Concordat, 10 September 1801; Consulate for Life, 1802; Founding of the Empire, 1804
  • “Governing the Empire” in Chapter 19 of D&M, pp. 159-160. The Imperial Catechism
  • “Colonial Ambitions” and “Colonial Retreat” in Napoleon Symbol for an Age, pp. 158-165 (on BB). Speech to the Legislature on the Reestablishment of Slavery, May 20, 1802; Letter to Toussaint Louverture, 1802; Confidential Instructions to General Leclerc, 1801; Letter to Napoleon Bonaparte from General Leclerc, October 7, 1802

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 5, pp. 149-158

Two Entries for Digital TimeLine Phase 2 (post-August 1792) due today

 WEEK 13

4/7 Building an Empire (1804-1811)


  • “Forging a New Elite” in Napoleon: Symbol for an Age (on BB), pp. 75-78. Letter of Recommendation to Military School; Notes on Military School Applicants, 1809
  • “The Imperial Court” in Napoleon: Symbol for an Age (on BB), pp. 109-114. Reestablishment of Court Etiquette; Guide to Imperial Etiquette, 1811; Talleyrand on Napoleon’s Austrian Marriage
  • Document 5.2 “Napoleon’s Reasons for Making Himself Emperor” H&C, pp. 177-78
  • Images of Napoleonic propaganda (in class)

Secondary: Documentary on Napoleon, see link on BB

L&V Entry 8 due Friday at 5 pm (required)

4/9  The Napoleonic Code and the Continental System (1803-1807)

Primary Sources:

  • “Governing the Empire” in Chapter 19 H&C, pp. 155-168. The Civil Code, March 1804-March 1804; Napoleon on Governing Italy, 5 June 1805; The Continental Blockade; Imposing the Code Napoléon on the Empire
  • Documents from Napoleon: Symbol for an Age, pp. 70-75, 155-157 (on BB). Preliminary Discourse on the Civil Code, Jan 21, 1801; Debate over the Civil Code, September 27, 1801; Lejeune, Smuggling and the Continental System; Inhabitants of Preston, Petition to the House of Commons, March 23, 1812

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 5, pp. 158-179

 WEEK 14

4/14 Policing and Imperial Overreach (1806-1812)

Primary Sources:

  • “Law and Order” in Chapter 17 of D&M, pp. 140-142. Crushing the rebels in the Vendée; Decree limiting the French press
  • “Paris Police Reports” in Napoleon: Symbol for an Age, pp. 97-100 (on BB).
  • “Resistance and Repression” in Chapter 20 D&M, pp. 169-174. Conscription under Napoleon; Dealing with the Rebels in Italy, 7 February 1806; A response to pillage in Spain, 12 December 1808

Secondary: H&C Chapter 6, pp. 181-197

4/16  The Empire’s Collapse

Primary Sources:

  • “The Russian Catastrophe” in Chapter 21 D&M, pp. 175-186. Napoleon to Alexander I, 1 July1812; Conditions during the Russian Campaign, 1812; 29th Bulletin of the Grande Armée, The Retreat from Moscow, 3 December 1812
  • “Collapse” in Chapter 22 D&M, pp.187-192.  The Mallet Affair, October 1812; the state of opinion in the countryside, 30 November 1813; The deposition of Napoleon, 3 April 1814; Abdication of Napoleon at Fountainbleau, 11 April 1814;

Secondary Reading: H&C Chapter 6, pp. 197-201.

L&V Entry 9 due Friday at 5 pm (optional)

Three StoryMap Entries (Revised & Resubmitted) Accepted

 WEEK 15

4/21 The Return of the Vanquished, the Legacy of Bonaparte (1812-1815)


  • “First Restoration and the Hundred Days” in Napoleon: Symbol for an Age, pp. 190-194 (on BB). Antoine-Claire Thibaudeau, The First Restoration; De las Cases, Account of a conversation between Benjamin Constant and Napoleon; Thibaudeau, The Hundred Days
  • “The Hundred Days” in Chapter 23 of D&M, pp. 193-196, 199-201. Louis XVII’s entry into Paris, 3 May 1814; Napoleon returns from Elba, 1 March 1815; The plebiscite of 1815
  • “Popular Bonapartism” in Napoleon: Symbol for an Age, pp. 204-208 (on BB).


  • H&C Chapter 6, pp. 201-209
  • “Conclusion: Crucible of the Modern World” in H&C, pp. 211-218

L&V Entry 10 due Friday at 5 pm (optional)

4/23 StoryMap Upload, Semester Review, and Exam Preparation

Presentation of StoryMaps, Written Reflection in class

4/28 (Tuesday) FINAL EXAM 2 to 5 pm