Professor Publishes Research in Leading French History Journal

A photo of USFSP Assistant Professor of History Dr. Adrian O'Connor at USF St. Petersburg

Dr. Adrian O’Connor

Dr. Adrian O’Connor, assistant professor of History at USF St. Petersburg, was recently published in the leading journal French Historical Studies. The article, “From the Classroom Out: Education Reform and the State in France, 1762-1771,” proposes a reinterpretation of debates regarding educational reform in France after the expulsion of the Jesuits in 1762.

“I argue that while historians have generally described these debates as reflecting a coherent but incomplete model for reform that reflected political and philosophical consensus, they were, in fact, symptomatic of a deep and paralyzing crisis in the political imagination of 18th century France,” said O’Connor, “one in which dramatically different views of French society, the French nation, and the French state came into conflict with one another.”

O’Connor said the article is part of his ongoing research on education and the French Revolution, which includes a nearly complete book manuscript entitled “In Pursuit of Politics: Education and Revolution in Eighteenth Century France.”  Much of his work focuses on the relationship between cultural politics and political culture in early modern and modern France.

“Dr. O’Connor has set his own professional bar very high with this publication,” said Dr. Frank Biafora, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.  “To publish in a journal as competitive and prestigious as French Historical Studies would be a career-defining accomplishment for any historian.  But, to have published this as a Junior faculty member is all the more impressive and demonstrates the exceptionality of Dr. O’Connor’s work among the world’s leading French scholars.”