Text of HUMS 101: Atlantic Revolutions and Their Progeny
HUMS 101: Atlantic Revolutions and Their Progeny
I. Atlantic Revolutions in a Global Context A.A world crisis? B.Uniqueness of the Atlantic revolutions C.The Atlantic as a world of ideas: improvement, reason, social contract (Locke and Rousseau), liberty and equality D.Democratic revolutions: gradually led to expanded political participation. E.Global impact of the Atlantic revolutions, 1789-1989
II. Comparing Atlantic Revolutions A. The North American Revolution, 17751787 1.Revolutionary? 2.Differences between English in England and English in America (no aristocracy, dominant church, lots of land) => ethos of Freedom 3.New taxes (Seven Years War, 1754-1763) and ideas from the Enlightenment 4.A revolutionary society before the revolution 5.But US constitution begins, We, the people
II. Comparing Atlantic Revolutions B. The French Revolution, 17891815 1.Enlightenment 2.US Revolutions influence: ideas, war debt, and taxes 3.Resentment of privilege: Estate system, peasants burdens 4.1788: Louis XVI calls a meeting of the Estates- General (had not met since 1614) 5.Increasing radicalism (war) 6.21 January 1793: Louis Capet guillotined. 7.Inventing a new, rational world: calendar, metric system, uniform legal code
II. Comparing Atlantic Revolutions B. The French Revolution, 17891815 4.Womens participation and then repression: march on Versailles, Olympe de Gouges; then backlash; Jacobins were anti-women. 5.Birth of the nation and the citizen: cut off kings head, so what were they fighting for?
Women in French Revolution (5 Oct. 1789)
Charlotte Corday, 1768-93 Jean-Paul Marat, 1743-93 Jacques-Louis David
Napoleon Bonaparte, b. 1769- d. 1821 1799: coup becomes first consul 1804 emperor Won many wars Lost war of 1812 Levee en masse Napoleons paradox: some equality, but not much liberty: ended feudalism spread religious tolerance rationalized administration provoked nationalism
II. Comparing Atlantic Revolutions C. The Haitian Revolution, 17911804 1.Saint Domingue, the richest colony in the world: 8000 slave plantations produced 40% of worlds sugar; 50% of coffee 2.African slaves, white colonists, and gens de couleur: a.500,000 African slaves b.40,000 whites: rich grands blancs; poor petit blancs c.30,000 free mixed race 3.Slave revolt, civil war, and foreign invasion 4.Toussaint Louverture, 1743-1803 5.Haiti: a post-slavery republic, but poor, isolated divided. 6.Independence debt: 150 mill francs; paid off in 1947.
II. Comparing Atlantic Revolutions in a Global Context D. Spanish American Revolutions, 18101825 1.Creole resentment of Spanish rule and taxes 2.Napoleons 1808 invasion of Spain and Portugal 3.Racial, class, and ideological divisions 4.Simn Bolvar and the Americanos 5.Independence without social revolution or unity: little democracy before 20 th century.
III. Echoes of Revolution A. The Abolition of Slavery 1.Protestant and Quaker moralism: abolitionist movement 2.New economic structures: capitalism preferred free labor 3.Haiti and other slave revolts: Haiti set precedent and proved it could be done. 4.British leadership: abolished slave trade in 1807; emancipated slaves in 1834.
III. Echoes of Revolution A. The Abolition of Slavery 5.Resistance to abolition: widespread, especially in southern USA; led to civil war, 1861-1865. 6.Emancipation without socio-economic changes: no land, few political rights granted. Russia ended serfdom, 1860s, but sold former serfs land. 7.Emancipation and colonialism in Africa and the Islamic world: end of slave trade led to low priced slaves and use in cash crops for export; Europeans took colonies to free slaves.
III. Echoes of Revolution B. Nations and Nationalism 1.The nation as a new idea: Reformation, printing press, Enlightenment, US and French revolutions, Napoleonic occupation of Europe 2.Unification (Germany, Italy) and independence (Greeks, Poles, Ukrainians) 3.International conflict: wars of nations, not just kings WWI 4.Political uses of nationalism: could divide and unite.
III. Echoes of Revolution C. Feminist Beginnings 1.Enlightenment attacked tradition, promoted liberty and rationality. 2.Mary Wollstonecraft, Vindication of the Rights of Women (1792) 3.Seneca Falls, 1848: Declaration of Sentiments: We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men and women are created equal 4.Suffrage and professional opportunities 5.Opposition 6.Trans-Atlantic and global feminisms
Mary Wollstonecraft, 1759-1797
IV. Reflections: Revolutions Pros and Cons A. Necessary? Promises? Worth the cost? B. Historians disagree and debate. C. Ongoing struggle to understand.