UCL Institute of the Americas


AMER0081: The Haitian Revolution

***NOT RUNNING IN 2022/23***

Tutor: Professor Gareth Davies

Level: 5

Credits: 15

Term: 2

This module provides an overview of the Haitian Revolution of 1791-1804, the only successful slave revolt in world history. It considers alternative explanations for this remarkable outcome, centring variously on slave leadership, pre-existent traditions of resistance, the French Revolutionary context, the power of ideas, and disease. It also examines the complex impact that the Haitian Revolution had in the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America. On the one hand, it helped to inspire slave revolts in the United States, Cuba and elsewhere, gave inspiration to European and U.S. abolitionism, and is seen by some as having played a role in Latin American independence struggles. On the other hand, it made slavery more profitable in Cuba, dimmed the anti-slavery sensibilities of the Framers of the United States, and resulted in Napoleon’s selling the vast Louisiana Territory—paving the way for the expansion of the U.S. across the Continent and for the expansion of slavery


Exam (2 hours)

Coursework (2,000 words)