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Assignments and Due Dates:
The term "history seminar" is a little misleading, because while our focus will be on understanding the histoyr and lives of French folks during the 18th and 19th centuries, we will be using art and literature as well as traditional history texts to aid us in our inquiry. Our main goal this quarter will be to probe the links between the ideas that elites and intellectuals (like the Enlightenment philosophers, Romantic painters, high-powered politicians, socialist theorists and naturalist writers) had about "the common people," and the identities, desires and realities of actual peasants, artisans, workers, women and enslaved subjects in the colognies. Furthermore, we'll ask: how did the political tumult of the great French Revolution that began in 1789, plus all the "little revolutions" of the 19th century and the birth of democratic and socialist movements, affect everyday folk? And what could everyday folk do to make their needs and desires heard by those at the top? We'll also ask whether we can ever really know what life was like for a Haitian slave, a 19h century clog maker, or a female participant of the 1870 Paris Commune. This work, which will cross the line between history, art and literature - and back again - will continue winter quarter as we move into the 20th century and add a new focus on colonialism/imperialism, including African independence movements, and wars of liberation, from the 1870s through the 1960s.
Final individual project:
Final history program group presentation:
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