HUMN 3035 Enlightenment and Revolution

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 101974

Coordinator Simon Burrows Opens in new window

Description The Enlightenment and Age of Revolutions are pivotal moments in Western and global history and had lasting political and cultural repercussions. This module seeks to explore links between them and to place them in wider intellectual and cultural context. Particular focus will be placed upon the paradigmatic French revolution, but within a framework emphasising other revolutions of the period. Hence individual classes treat society and government in Europe; the moderate and radical strands of enlightenment; precursors to the French revolution in the Atlantic world; the public sphere; the French revolution and Terror; Revolutionary Imperialism and Napoleonic rule; the revolutionary legacy.

School Humanities & Comm Arts

Discipline History

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

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Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject


Successful completion of 60 credit points of study in currently enrolled program.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. demonstrate advanced skills of documentary interpretation when confronted with primary source material
  2. analyse and offer critical, internationally comparative judgements on the nature of the enlightenment, public sphere and revolutions of the age of revolutions
  3. evaluate possible causative links between the political theory of the enlightenment and the politics of revolution
  4. demonstrate critical awareness of the historiographical debates and interpretations surrounding the enlightenment and French revolution
  5. contextualise the Enlightenment and the French Revolution in a broader context of debates about the nature of late modernity.

Subject Content

1. Political Culture in the Enlightenment
. Society and government in Enlightenment Europe
. High Politics and the High Enlightenment
. Radical Enlightenments
. The Rise of the Public Sphere
2. Revolutionary France
. The dawn of the Atlantic Revolution
. The Political Origins of the French revolution
. 1789 - the Year of the Great Revolution
. The Fall of the Monarchy and the Birth of the Republic
. Violence, Terror and Civil War
3. Legacies: The French Imperium and the Revolutionary Tradition
. War and Imperialism
. The Napoleonic Episode
. The Revolutionary Tradition in Europe, 1815-1871
. Conclusions

Prescribed Texts

  • Subject Reader available through the Connect Bookshop