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Topics in History: A Cultural Encounter with Enlightenment France

A photograph of the Palace of Versailles in France, with a grand water fountain on the lawn
The Palace of Versailles

From the beast that terrified the villagers of Gevaudan to the glittering secrets of Versailles, the cultural history of France is unexpectedly extraordinary. Join us in exploring Enlightenment France through art, architecture, food, music, literature, and so much more. This course asks “what life was like” in France and its empire from the late seventeenth to the late eighteenth centuries, loosely the period captured by the phrase “The Enlightenment.” 
Students will engage with the lived experience of this period using sometimes unconventional sources. This course challenges students to explore cultural history through a wide variety of sources in addition to traditional books and articles. Sources will include folk tales, paintings, buildings and cityscapes, as well as interpretations of French history in modern media.

This course is offered as a 3.0-unit seminar during the 2022-2023 year. 

Department of History, Queen's University

49 Bader Lane, Watson Hall 212
Kingston ON K7L 3N6




Queen's University is situated on traditional Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe territory.