The Oxford Handbook of the French Revolution

ISBN : 9780198845942

David Andress
704 Pages
171 x 246 mm
Pub date
Jun 2019
Oxford Handbooks
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The Oxford Handbook of the French Revolution brings together a sweeping range of expert and innovative contributions to offer engaging and thought-provoking insights into the history and historiography of this epochal event. Each chapter presents the foremost summations of academic thinking on key topics, along with stimulating and provocative interpretations and suggestions for future research directions. Placing core dimensions of the history of the French Revolution in their transnational and global contexts, the contributors demonstrate that revolutionary times demand close analysis of sometimes tiny groups of key political actors - whether the king and his ministers or the besieged leaders of the Jacobin republic - and attention to the deeply local politics of both rural and urban populations. Identities of class, gender and ethnicity are interrogated, but so too are conceptions and practices linked to citizenship, community, order, security, and freedom: each in their way just as central to revolutionary experiences, and equally amenable to critical analysis and reflection.

This Handbook covers the structural and political contexts that build up to give new views on the classic question of the 'origins of revolution'; the different dimensions of personal and social experience that illuminate the political moment of 1789 itself; the goals and dilemmas of the period of constitutional monarchy; the processes of destabilisation and ongoing conflict that ended that experiment; the key issues surrounding the emergence and experience of 'terror'; and the short- and long-term legacies, for both good and ill, of the revolutionary trauma - for France, and for global politics.


Part 1: Origins
1 Silvia Marzagalli: Economic and Demographic Developments
2 Lauren R. Clay: The Bourgeoisie, Capitalism, and the Origins of the French Revolution
3 Jay M. Smith: Nobility
4 Joel Felix: The monarchy
5 Simon Burrows: Books, Philosophy, Enlightenment
6 Annie Jourdan: Tumultuous Contexts and Radical Ideas (1783-89). The 'Pre-Revolution' in a Transnational Perspective
7 Thomas E. Kaiser: The Diplomatic Origins of the French Revolution
Part 2: The Coming of Revolution
8 John Hardman: The View from Above
9 Pierre-Yves Beaurepaire: The View from Below: the 1789 cahiers de doleances
10 Peter McPhee: A Social Revolution? Rethinking Popular Insurrection in 1789
11 Micah Alpaugh: A Personal Revolution: National Assembly Deputies and the Politics of 1789
Part 3: Revolution and Constitution
12 Michael P. Fitzsimmons: Sovereignty and Constitutional Power
13 Malcolm Crook: The New Regime: Political Institutions and Democratic Practices under the Constitutional Monarchy, 1789-91
14 Jeremy D. Popkin: Revolution and Changing Identities in France, 1787-1799
15 Edward J. Woell: Religion and Revolution
16 D. M. G. Sutherland: Urban Violence in 1789
17 Manuel Covo: Revolution, race and slavery
Part 4: Counter-revolution and collapse
18 Ambrogio Caiani: Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette
19 Kirsty Carpenter: Emigration in Politics and Imaginations
20 Noelle Plack: Challenges in the Countryside, 1790-2
21 Charles Walton: Club, Party and Faction
22 Alan Forrest: Military Trauma
Part 5: The New Republic
23 David Andress: Politics and Insurrection: The Sans-culottes, The 'Popular Movement' and the People of Paris
24 Marc Belissa: War and Diplomacy (1792-1795)
25 Paul Hanson: From Faction to Revolt
26 Dan Edelstein: What was the Terror?
27 Marisa Linton: Terror and Politics
28 Ronen Steinberg: Reckoning with Terror: Retribution, Redress, and Remembrance in Post-Revolutionary France
29 Mike Rapport: Jacobinism from Outside
Part 6: After Thermidor
30 Laura Mason: Thermidor and the Myth of Rupture
31 Howard G. Brown: The Politics of Public Order, 1795-1802
32 Jean-Luc Chappey: The New Elites: Questions about political, social and cultural reconstruction after the Terror
33 Philip Dwyer: Napoleon, The Revolution, and The Empire
34 Isser Woloch: Lasting Political Structures
35 Jeff Horn: Lasting Economic Structures: Successes, Failures, and Revolutionary Political Economy
36 Jennifer Heuer: Did Everything Change? Rethinking Revolutionary Legacies
37 David A. Bell: Global Conceptual Legacies

About the author: 

David Andress received his DPhil from the University of York in 1995, and has worked at the University of Portsmouth for the last twenty years. He has published widely on the French Revolution, from micro-studies of Parisian responses in 1789-91 to introductory textbooks, and from monographs to major syntheses and works of comparative history.

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