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Articles sur French Revolution

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How a conspiracy theory about the origins of the French Revolution became steeped in antisemitism. Nine émigrés executed by guillotine, from La Guillotine in 1793 by H. Fleischmann/Wikimedia

Simonini’s letter: the 19th century text that influenced antisemitic conspiracy theories about the Illuminati

The dangerous legacy of a letter received by Augustin Barruel, a French Catholic priest and famous conspiracy theorist, in the early 1800s.
Ugandan opposition politician Bobi Wine takes a selfie with Zimbabwe’s opposition leader Nelson Chamisa Aaron Ufumeli/EPA-EFE

Politics and fashion: the rise of the red beret

Bobi Wine in Uganda does it; so do the Economic Freedom Fighters in South Africa. The red beret is worn to signify the revolutionary. Its power lies in a symbolism that combines art and politics.
Hong Kong protesters shelter behind a thin barrier – and umbrellas – as police fire tear gas and encircle a group of demonstrators. AP Photo/Vincent Yu

Is there hope for a Hong Kong revolution?

Revolutions are built not on deep misery but on rising expectations. History may not provide much hope of immediate change in Hong Kong – but protesters may have a longer view.
Tarana Burke created #MeToo in 2006 but it didn’t emerge as a mass social movement until 2017. AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes

Why social movements like #MeToo seem to come out of nowhere

From the French Revolution to #MeToo, social movements often burst into the mainstream with what seems like little warning. Cass Sunstein explains why.
The word ‘terrorism’ was first used at the time of the French Revolution. Charles Monnet/Wikimedia Commons

Terrorism: a very brief history

Terrorism hasn't always been associated with individuals – in the past, it has described violence used by the state against its subjects.
An 1808 painting by Marie-Gabrielle Capet titled Atelier of Madame Vincent, showing Labille-Guiard at work (centre) as Capet fills her palette. Wikimedia Commons

Hidden women of history: Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, prodigiously talented painter

Adélaïde Labille-Guiard was a supremely skilled artist. But like so many talented women before and since, she suffered from snide allegations that she could not be capable of such brilliance.
The Hall of Mirrors at Versailles Palace. Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Friday essay: what is it about Versailles?

Donald Trump has a Versailles-inspired apartment. There's a popular TV series and now, a new exhibition of treasures from the palace. A glittering symbol of aristocratic frivolity, Versailles was, in fact, a place of awesome royal power.
Ahmed Negm, the Egyptian poet of protest. STR/EPA

How Wordsworth informed the poetry of the Arab Spring

The excitement that accompanied the beginning of the Arab Spring has now largely died down, as a timeworn truth reiterates itself: when an oppressive power is toppled, a similar or worse one will often…

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