Surviving Revolution: Bourgeois Families in France, 1780-1830


Frederick Burkhardt Residential Fellowships for Recently Tenured Scholars




For residence at the National Humanities Center during academic year 2010-2011


This project uses familial correspondence to discuss the lives and views of three interrelated bourgeois families in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century France. It weaves the more theoretical components of the project—analysis of what it meant to be bourgeois, how gender played a role in the formation of class identities, and how emotional life overlapped with all the other arenas in which the men and women in these families acted and interacted—into the narrative, which recounts the fascinating stories told by these men and women in their letters. A work of social history, family history, and cultural history, the project contributes to our understanding of the concrete significance of the French Revolution and of identity construction as a process and set of practices.