Timothy Tackett

Picture of Timothy Tackett
Professor Emeritus, History
School of Humanities
Ph.D., Stanford University, 1973, History
M.A., Stanford University, 1969, History
B.A., Pomona College, 1967, History
Phone: History Department: (949) 824-6521
Fax: (949) 824-2865
Email: ttackett@uci.edu
University of California, Irvine
333 Murray Krieger Hall
Mail Code: 3275
Irvine, CA 92697
Research Interests
Old Regime, French Revolution; social, religious and cultural history; violence, terror
Academic Distinctions
1967-68 Fulbright Fellowship to Poitiers, France
1968-69 Ford Foundation Fellowship
1969-70 NDEA Fellowship
1970-73 SSRC Fellowship to France (Foreign Area
1975 American Philosophical Society Research Grant
1977-78 ACLS Fellowship
1981 American Philosophical Society Research Grant
1982-83 Fulbright Fellowship to Rennes, France
1986-87 Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship
1987 Camargo Foundation Fellow (Cassis, France)
1988 Woodrow Wilson International Center Guest Scholar
1990-91 National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship
1996-97 President's Fellowship, University of California
2000-01 National Humanities Center Fellowship
2007 Research Fellowship, Senshu University, Tokyo
2008 Miegunyah Distinguished Lectureship, University of Melbourne
1978 Shea Prize for Priest and Parish
(best book in religious history)
1978 Phi Alpha Theta Award for Priest and Parish
(best first book)
1983 Koren Prize for "The West in France in 1789"
(best article in French history)
1984 Chester Higby Prize for "The West in France in
1789" (best article in Journal of Modern
History, 1983-84)
1998 Leo Gershoy Prize for Becoming a Revolutionary
(American Historical Association award for best
book in Early-Modern Europe)
2004 Los Angeles Times Book Award Finalist for History: for The King
Takes Flight
1974-79 Marquette University, assistant professor
1979-85 Catholic University, associate professor
l982-83 University of Rennes, France, visiting
1985-88 Catholic University, professor
1991 Ecole des hautes études en sciences
sociales, Paris, visiting professor
1991 Scuola normale superiore, Pisa, Italy,
visiting professor
1997 Ecole des hautes études en sciences
sociales, Paris, visiting professor
2001 Ecole des hautes études en sciences
sociales, Paris, visiting professor
Research Abstract
Much of my earlier research and writing was concerned with religious culture in France under the Old Regime and the French Revolution. In a first book (Princeton, 1977) I focused on the rural parish clergy and its relations with the peasantry, in part as a means of entering into the cultural perspectives of a largely illiterate population which left no direct records. In a second book (Princeton, 1986), I made use of a civic oath required of all clergymen in early 1791 to explore regional religious culture in France at the end of the eighteenth century and to sort through the social, economic, and political determinants of that culture. I returned to this earlier interest in religious culture when I co-edited volume VII of the Cambridge History of Christianity (Cambridge, 2006), a synthesis covering the period from the mid-seventeenth to the early nineteenth centuries.

Beginning in the late 1980s my research turned toward a series of questions related to revolutions: how they arise, how they function, how men and women become revolutionaries, how and why revolutions become violent. In an effort to test conflicting theories about the origins and process of the Revolution of 1789. I wrote a book about the 1200 members of the first French National Assembly (Princeton, 1996): their cultural and socio-economic backgrounds and their political options in the course of the Revolution. This study involved both an extensive quantitative analysis of the men of 1789 and an examination of the diaries and letters of about 100 individuals.

Since the turn of the present century, I have focused above all on the origins of the violence and terror during the Revolution. As a first stage in this inquiry, I completed a book (Harvard U.P., 2003) on the attempted flight of King Louis XVI and his family on the first day of summer 1791 and the impact of this event on the Revolution, in general, and the origins of the Terror, in particular. Most recently completed a major new overview history on the French Revolution (Harvard U.P., 2015) and the coming of the Terror in 1793-1794.

Concurrently I am pursuing several parallel topics related to the Revolution: notably the role of rumor in the coming of the Terror and the history of denunciation during the Revolution.
The Coming of the Terror in the French Revolution (Cambridge, 2015)
Cambridge History of Christianity. Vol. 7. Enlightenment, Reawakening, Revolution (1660-1815), co-edited (Cambridge, 2006)
The Coming of the French Revolution, by Georges Lefebvre, edited with a new introduction. (Princeton, Press, 2005)
When the King Took Flight (Harvard, 2003)
[also in French and Italian translations]
Becoming a Revolutionary: The Deputies of the French National Assembly and the Origins of a Revolutionary Culture (Princeton, 1996)
[also in French and Italian translations]
Atlas de la Révolution française. Vol. 9, Religion, co-edited with Claude Langlois and Michel Vovelle (Paris, 1996)
Religion, Revolution, and Regional Culture in Eighteenth-Century France (Princeton, 1986)
[Also in French translation]
Priest and Parish in Eighteenth-Century France (Princeton, 1977)
"Paths to Revolution: The Old Regime Correspondence of Five Future Revolutionaries," French Historical Studies (2009)
"La grande peur de 1789 et la thèse du complot aristocratique," Annales historiques de la Révolution française, no. 335 (2004)
"Collective Panics in the Early French Revolution, 1789-1791: A Comparative Perspective," French History (2003)
"Conspiracy Obsession in a Time of Revolution: French Elites and the Origins of the Terror, 1789-1792," American Historical Review (2000)
"The Constituent Assembly and the Terror" in The Terror, ed. K. Baker (1994)
"Nobles and Third Estate in the Revolutionary Dynamic of the National Assembly: 1789-1790," American Historical Review (1989)
"Women and Men in Counterrevolutions," The Journal of Modern History (1987)
"The West in France in 1789: The Religious Factor in the Origins of the Counterrevolutions," The Journal of Modern History (1982)
"A l'epreuve de la Revolution," in Histoire des Catholiques en France, ed. Francois Lebrun (Toulouse, 1980)
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