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  • Credits: 3

Prerequisites: 01:420:315 or 01:420:316; one additional 300-level in French recommended

Course Description: This course examines the many revolutions that rippled through the French-speaking world from the 18th to the 21st century. Students will explore the French Revolution, the Haitian Revolution, the Paris Commune, Burkina Faso’s Communist revolution, the Kanak independence war, the Tahitian antinuclear uprisings, and the Tunisian Arab Spring. Given the breadth of topics, the objective is not so much to gain an exhaustive understanding of any one revolution, but rather to explore the connections between them, and to analyze how politics and literature have co-contributed to challenging the existing social order. We will discuss the following questions: How successful was each revolution in shifting power to “the people”? Whose position improved and whose did not? How much did these revolutions inspire one another? Can any lessons be transposed to contemporary politics? Primary materials include plays, films, poetry, essays, songs, and speeches by revolutionaries such as Maximilien Robespierre, Victor Hugo, Aimé Césaire, Thomas Sankara, Déwé Göröidé, Titaua Peu, and Youssef El Chazli.  Cross-listed with French 01:420:391

Exams, Assignments, and Grading Policy:  Students will demonstrate their mastery of the topic through participation in-class discussion (20%), in-class exposés (10%) weekly online forums (20%), and the building of a multimodal e-portfolio featuring op-eds, oral presentations, digital art and/or creative writing (50%). 

Faculty: Prof. Anaïs Maurer