About this Course
4.8
258 ratings
61 reviews
The French Revolution was one of the most important upheavals in world history. This course examines its origins, course and outcomes. This course is designed for you to work through successfully on your own. However you will not be alone on this journey. Use the resources included in the course and take part in the suggested learning activities to get the most out of your learning. To successfully complete this course, it is recommended that you devote at least six hours to every module over the six weeks of the course. In that time you should watch the video lectures, reflect and respond to in-video pause points, and complete the quizzes. As part of the required reading for this course, during each week of this course you will have free access to a chapter of Peter McPhee's textbook, The French Revolution, which is also available for purchase as an e-book. View the MOOC promotional video here: http://tinyurl.com/gstw4vv...
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Calendar

Flexible deadlines

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Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 6 weeks of study, 4-6 hours/week

Approx. 18 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English, Spanish, Romanian
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 6 weeks of study, 4-6 hours/week

Approx. 18 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English, Spanish, Romanian

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
4 hours to complete

Week 1 - France in the 1780s

We begin this course with an introduction to the French Revolution. We will examine the social and institutional structures of the Old Regime. We will look at the main occupational groups and the roles of the First and Second estates (the clergy and nobility) in particular. We will also consider the relationship between Paris and the provinces in Old Regime France. Finally, you will be introduced to the Enlightenment and we will reflect on its significance and its possible revolutionary implications....
Reading
7 videos (Total 106 min), 4 readings, 1 quiz
Video7 videos
1.1 An Introduction to the French Revolution14m
1.2 The Essentials of Eighteenth-Century France14m
1.3 The First & Second Estates: Clergy and Nobility24m
1.4 Paris and the Provinces9m
1.5 The 'Enlightenment': 'from above'18m
1.6 The 'Enlightenment': 'from below'21m
Reading4 readings
Course Overview10m
Your teaching team10m
Start of course survey10m
France in the 1780s40m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week one quiz - 12% of final grade10m

2

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

Week 2 - The Revolution of 1789

This week we look at the Revolution of 1789 and its causes. We will explore the tensions and conflicts that led to the crisis of the Old Regime. The focus will be on the Third Estate and the revolt of the bourgeoisie, the 'menu peuple' and the peasantry. We will look at the Declaration of the Rights of Man and citizen and you will be asked to reflect on its 'universal' significance....
Reading
6 videos (Total 68 min), 1 reading, 1 quiz
Video6 videos
2.2 A fiscal crisis and its repercussions12m
2.3 The Third Estate in revolt: bourgeoisie and menu people13m
2.4 The Third Estate in revolt: the peasantry11m
2.5 The Declaration of the Rights of Man and the August Decrees11m
2.6 The October Days - the end of the Revolution?9m
Reading1 reading
The Revolution of 178950m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week two quiz - 12% of final grade10m

3

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

Week 3 - The Reconstruction of France, 1789-92

Week three of this MOOC deals with the reforms introduced in 1789-91. We look at the institutional and administrative reorganisation of France. We will then consider three critical turning points of the Revolution: the Civil Constitution of the Clergy, the King's attempted flight in 1791 and the outbreak of war in 1792. Finally we will look at the fate of the King and the ultimate failure of the monarchy. You will be asked to reflect on the immediate effects and longer-term consequences of these events....
Reading
6 videos (Total 63 min), 1 reading, 1 quiz
Video6 videos
3.2 The Revolution divides8m
3.3 Turning-point 1: Church reform10m
3.4 Turning-point 2: the King's flight June 179112m
3.5 Turning-point 3: The outbreak of war April 17929m
3.6 A second revolution: 10 August 17929m
Reading1 reading
Reform, conflict, and a second Revolution, 1789-179250m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week three quiz - 12% of final grade10m

4

Section
Clock
4 hours to complete

Week 4 - The Republic in crisis 1792-93

Week four deals with the crisis of the Republic in 1792-93. We will examine the conflicts and disunity within the National Convention and consider the balance between revolutionary and counter-revolutionary forces by mid-1793. We will explore the civil war in the Vendee region of Western France and attempt to make sense of the growing revolutionary violence. We will look at the origins of the 'Terror', its institutions and its ideology, and students will be asked to reflect more broadly on the role of violence during the Revolution....
Reading
10 videos (Total 130 min), 1 reading, 1 quiz
Video10 videos
4.2 September 1792: republican unity and disunity in the National Convention11m
4.3 Revolution and counter-revolution: the balance of forces10m
4.4 The crisis of 179311m
4.5 Emergency measures: the implementation of 'terror'17m
4.6 How to end 'terror', December 17937m
Interview with Dr Marisa Linton 11m
Interview with Professor Timothy Tackett16m
Interview with Professor Ian Germani 17m
Interview with Charles Walton15m
Reading1 reading
The crisis of 1792-1793: war and terror40m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week four quiz - 12% of final grade10m
4.8

Top Reviews

By AKAug 11th 2017

Well-structured course that explores the topic with depth and clarity, taught by a brilliant and engaging professor. Would recommend to anyone interested in the French and world history

By ABAug 17th 2016

This was one of the best courses that I took at Coursera. The wide ranging knowledge of Professor McPhee is impressive. The course was well organized and well presented.

Instructor

Peter McPhee

Honorary, Melbourne Graduate School of Education

About The University of Melbourne

The University of Melbourne is an internationally recognised research intensive University with a strong tradition of excellence in teaching, research, and community engagement. Established in 1853, it is Australia's second oldest University....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.