11110262 - Anglais civilisation - histoire des idées 5

Niveau de diplôme
Crédits ECTS 4
Volume horaire total 21
Volume horaire CM 21




This course focuses on the United States Declaration of Independence, but also uses the document as a means of exploring larger themes. Students will thus examine the causes of the American Revolution (as well as how those causes were represented in the Declaration’s accusations against King George III), the ideology of the revolution (as well as how political ideas were represented in the Declaration’s preamble and conclusion), and explore particular phenomena referred to in the Declaration (such as the meaning of equality, the ideas of “liberty” and “the pursuit of happiness,” and the realities of slavery). The course will also examine the processes of drafting, editing, and printing the Declaration in order to explore such issues as authorship, rhetoric, aesthetics, audience, and performance. The seminars will conclude by examining the legacy of the Declaration in the United States and the wider world since 1776.

The course will be helpful for students of the history of ideas, culture, and politics, and also students of philosophy, law, and language. Students will have the opportunity to work on aspects of the Declaration that particularly interest them.


Selected Bibliography:
  • BECKER, Carl L., The Declaration of Independence: A Study in the History of Political Ideas, Gloucester, UK: Dodo Press, 2008
  • BOYD, Julian P, The Declaration of Independence: The Evolution of a Text, Washington DC, Library of Congress, revised edition, 2000
  • WILLS, Garry, Inventing America: Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, New York, Houghton Mifflin, 2002
  • MAIER, Pauline, American Scripture: How America Declared its Independence from Britain, New York, Pimlico, 1999
  • FLEIGELMAN, Jay, Declaring Independence: Jefferson, Natural Language, and the Culture of Performance, Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1993
  • ARMITAGE, David. The Declaration of Independence: A Global History. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 2008

Contrôles des connaissances

Contrôle continu.