The French Revolution's Other Island: The Impact of Saint-Domingue on Revolutionary Politics

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Citation

Popkin, Jeremy D., University of Kentucky. "The French Revolution's Other Island: The Impact of Saint-Domingue on Revolutionary Politics." The Haitian Revolution: Viewed 200 Years After, an International Scholarly Conference. John Carter Brown Library, Providence, RI. June 19, 2004.

Notes

Following are rough notes of Popkin's presentation, taken by Stuart Maxwell on June 19, 2004.


  • Draws a comparison (loosely) of Saint-Domingue's relationship to France being like Ireland's to England.
  • The economic impact of the revolution must have been major.
  • It was easy and preferential for the French to believe in conspiracy theories, especially for the start of the revolution.

In response to questions:

  • Colonies had been considered property of the Crown. About 1794, the idea that colonies were part of the mother country (like Ireland to England) changed fundamentally how the French thought about how to behave towards the colony.
  • Robin Blackburn, present in the audience, noted during the question period that France's war with Britain was a tremendous distraction which lessened France's grip in Saint-Domingue.