What is the course about?
The storming of the Bastille is undoubtedly one of the most famous events in French history. What led to the events of 14th of July 1789? What were their consequences? And what place does that day occupy in the French collective memory?
What will we cover?
France towards the end of the 1780s: the economic and political situation
- Growing economic difficulties
- The state of the monarchy and the growing challenge to the feudal system
- The decision to summon the Estates-General and its consequences
The events of 14th of July 1789 and their significance: a turning point of the French Revolution?
- What happened on 14th July?
- The significance of the storming of the Bastille
The immediate aftermath of the storming of the Bastille
One year later, the Fête de la Fédération
Bastille Day in the collective memory.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
Discuss the economic difficulties France faced by the end of the 1780s
Explain the significance of the Estates-General of 1789 and of the decision of the Third Estate (the commoners) to form a National Assembly
Explain what the fortress of the Bastille symbolised
List at least four key events that took place in the aftermath of the storming of the Bastille
Evaluate the political situation one year later and the significance of the Fête de la Fédération
Discuss the meaning and significance of 14th of July in the collective memory.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an 'introductory' level course. No specific knowledge needed, although some background information on and interest in history in general, would be helpful, and a good understanding of English is essential. As with most of our history and current affairs courses, intellectual curiosity and an open mind are more important than specific previous knowledge.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
The course will be a combination of lectures and group discussions. Classes will be supported by
PowerPoint presentations and handouts. Learners will be asked to read a couple of articles at home to
prepare the discussions in class. These will be available on the website for the course.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
None. Do bring along writing materials (paper and pen) to take down any notes that you would like to during the course.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Further information can be found on the Build website with information of upcoming courses in the Humanities Department for the 2018/19 academic year.
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details