French Revolution and Human Rights: A Brief Documentary History / Edition 1

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This brief documentary history includes 38 documents that explore the issue of rights and citizenship in Revolutionary France and the movement that helped define modern notions of civil rights.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312108021
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
  • Publication date: 4/28/1996
  • Series: Bedford Cultural Editions Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 150
  • Sales rank: 316,819
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.17 (h) x 0.33 (d)

Meet the Author

LYNN HUNT, Eugen Weber Professor of Modern European History at University of California at Los Angeles, received her B.A. from Carleton College and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. She is the author of Revolution and Urban Politics in Provincial France (1978), Politics, Culture, and Class in the French Revolution (1984), and The Family Romance of the French Revolution (1992); she is also the co-author of Telling the Truth About History (1994), co-author of Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution (2001, with CD-ROM), editor of The New Cultural History (1989), editor and translator of The French Revolution and Human Rights (1996), and co-editor of Histories: French Constructions of the Past (1995), Beyond the Cultural Turn (1999), and Human Rights and Revolutions (2000). She has been awarded fellowships by the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She served as president of the American Historical Association in 2002.

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Table of Contents




1. Defining Rights before 1789
Natural Law as Defined by the Encyclopedia
1. Diderot, "Natural Law" 1755
Religious Toleration
2. Voltaire, Treatise on Toleration, 1763
3. Edict of Toleration, November 1787
4. Letter from Rabaut Saint Etienne on the Edict of Toleration, December 6, 1787
5. Zalkind Hourwitz, Vindication of the Jews, 1789
Antislavery Agitation
6. Abbé Raynal, From the Philosophical and Political History of the Settlements and Trade of the Europeans in the East and West Indies, 1770
7. Condorcet, Reflections on Negro Slavery, 1781
8. Society of the Friends of Blacks, Discourse on the Necessity of Establishing in Paris a Society for. . .the Abolition of the Slave Trade and of Negro Slavery, 1788
Women Begin to Agitate for Rights
9. "Petition of Women of the Third Estate to the King," January 1, 1789
Categories of Citizenship
10. Abbé Sieyès, What Is the Third Estate?, January, 1789

2. The Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, 1789
Debates about the Declaration of Rights, July and August 1789
11. Marquis de Lafayette, July 11, 1789
12. Duke Mathieu de Montmorency, August 1, 1789
13. Malouet, August 1, 1789
The Declaration
14. "Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen," August 26, 1789

3. Debates over Citizenship and Rights during the Revolution
The Poor and the Propertied
15. Abbé Sieyès, Preliminary to the French Constitution, August 1789
16. Thouret, Report on the Basis of Political Eligibility, September 29, 1789
17. Speech of Robespierre Denouncing the New Conditions of Eligibility, October 22, 1789
Religious Minorities and Questionable Professions
The First Controversies
18. Brunet de Latuque, December 21, 1789
19. Count de Clermont Tonnerre, December 23, 1789
20. Abbé Maury, December 23, 1789
21. Letter from French Actors, December 24, 1789
22. Prince de Broglie, December 24, 1789
The Jewish Question
23. Petition of the Jews of Paris, Alsace, and Lorraine to the National Assembly, January 28, 1790
24. La Fare, Bishop Nancy, Opinion on the Admissibility of Jews to Full Civil and Political Rights, Spring 1790
25. Admission of Jews to Rights of Citizenship, September 27, 1791
Free Blacks and Slaves
26. The Abolition of Negro Slavery or Means for Ameliorating Their Lot, 1789
27. Motion Made by Vincent Ogé the Youger to the Assembly of Colonists, 1789
28. Abbé Grégoire, Memoir in Favor of the People of Color or Mixed-Race of Saint Domingue, 1789
29. Society of the Friends of Blacks, Address to the National Assembly in Favor of the Abolition of Slave Trade, February 5, 1790
30. Speech of Barnave, March 8, 1790
31. Kersaint, Discussion of Troubles in the Colonies, March 28, 1792
32. Decree of the National Convention of February 4, 1794, Abolishing Slavery in All the Colonies
33. Speech of Chaumette Celebrating the Abolition of Slavery, February 18, 1794
34. Condorcet, "On the Admission of Women to the Rights of Citizenship," July 1790
35. Etta Palm D'Aelders, Discourse on the Injustice of Laws in Favor of Men, at the Expense of Women, December 30, 1790
36. Olympe de Gouges, The Declaration of Rights of Woman, September 1791
37. Prudhomme, "On the Influence of the Revolution on Women," February 12, 1791
38. Discussion of Citizenship under the Proposed New Constitution, April 29, 1793
39. Discussion of Women's Political Clubs and Their Suppression, October 29-30, 1793
40. Chaumette, Speech at the General Council of the City Government of Paris Denouncing Women's Political Activism, November 17, 1793

Questions for Consideration
Selected Bibliography


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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2003

    Exquisite collection

    As a college teacher of human rights, I can say that this selection is unsurpassed as a sourcebook for the study of the history of rights. The collection features a highly readable introduction by the esteemed historian Lynn Hunt - highly recommended also for the general reader interested in rights. These documents are powerful.

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