Skip to main content

Over Here

March 2023
2min read

Throughout 1989 the bicentennial of France’s Revolution is being observed in the United States with hundreds of exhibitions, performances, and symposiums. Among the events that will continue into the second half of the year are the following:

L’Art de Vivre: Decorative Arts and Design in France, 1789–1989

is an exhibition at the Cooper-Hewitt Museum in New York City running through July 16.

The Declaration of the Rights of Man

—the germinal original document of the Revolution—will be on loan to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., from France’s National Archives, through October 31. It’l be flown over by a Concorde SST that, when retired from service, will be donated to the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum.

Words of Blood, Images of Fire

a collection of drawings, prints, and rare books depicting Revolutionary, events, will be at New York City’s Pierpont Morgan Library through August 20.

Lafayette: Hero of Two Worlds

contains more than two hundred objects from French and American collections that spotlight the role of the French aristocrat in both revolutions. This display may be seen at the Queens Museum in New York City from June 9 to August 13 and at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia from October 1 to January 30, 1990.

Alexis de Tocqueville and the French Revolution

goes on exhibit at the Library of Congress from September 7 to October 22.

The Age of Napoleon: Costume from Revolution to Empire

features French costume at New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art from December 13 to April 15, 1990.

Films on the French Revolution: A Retrospective, 1897 to 1989

organized by the UCLA Film and Television Archive, will make a dozen stops across the country during the year.


a six-hour radio special presenting the background, personalities, and events of the Revolution, can be heard nationwide on National Public Radio, July 14.

Bicentennial Television Specials

is a yearlong series of programs on events in France, including live coverage of Bastille Day festivities, produced by the Arts and Entertainment cable network.

The French Revolution: A UCLA Bicentennial Program

an eighteen-month series of lectures, conferences, symposiums, exhibits, and performances in which scholars from around the world will participate, runs from June 18, 1988, to November 29, 1989.

The French Revolution and Its Modern Legacy: A Bicentennial Reappraisal

is a similar long-running interdisciplinary program being held at New York University from July 5, 1988, to November 15, 1989.

The Contagion of Liberty

a symposium whose participants include Justice William Brennan of the U.S. Supreme Court, Justice Robert Badinter of France, and Mayor Andrew Young of Atlanta, will be held in New Orleans from September 6 to September 9.

Symposium on the French Revolution

is expected to draw nearly two hundred scholars from Europe and the United States. Organized by Florida State University, it will be held in Tallahassee, Florida, from September 28 to September 30.

Les Droits de l’Homme and Scientific Progress

sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution and the National Academy of Sciences, will take place in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., October 25 to October 28.

La Ville de Pain Court: St. Louis 1764–1820

an exhibition that celebrates the 225th anniversary of the founding of St. Louis by French Creole settlers, is on display at the History Museum, Forest Park, St. Louis, March 5 to December 31.

La Kermesse de la Bastille

a French festival held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, includes ballet, theater, opera, and symphonic music, from July 13 to July 16. French Dance Today includes nine French contemporary companies that will appear at a number of American dance festivals in July.

I Write in Space

an Omnimax film about the history of telecommunications from the French Revolution to the present, opens on July 10 at both the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., and the Robin Fleet Museum in San Diego.

—Carla Davidson

We hope you enjoy our work.

Please support this 72-year tradition of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it with a donation to American Heritage.


Stories published from "July/August 1989"

Authored by: The Editors

John Philip Sousa and his seventyfive-piece band were brought to town to celebrate the building’s opening.

Authored by: The Editors

James Madison and the Republican Legacy

Authored by: The Editors

Missionary for the Modern

Authored by: The Editors

Colonial Revivals and American Culture, 1876–1986

Authored by: The Editors

A Biography

Authored by: Garry Wills

When the French Revolution broke out two hundred years ago this month, Americans greeted it enthusiastically. After all, without the French we could never have become free. But the cheers faded as the brutality of the convulsion emerged—and we saw we were still only a feeble newborn facing a giant, intimidating world power.

Authored by: The Editors

The ubiquitous legacy of America’s favorite Frenchman

Authored by: John Kobler

In the years between the dedication of the Statue of Liberty and the First World War, the Divine Sarah was, for hundreds of thousands of Americans, the single most compelling embodiment of the French Republic

Authored by: Mark Jenkins

Remember the excitement of the 1924 Olympics in Chariots of Fire? That was nothing compared with what the U.S. rugby team did to the French at those games.

Authored by: Albert B. Stephenson

The Tin Lizzie carried us into the twentieth century, but she gave us a hell of a shaking along the way. Now a veteran driver tells what everybody knew and nobody bothered to write down.

Featured Articles

Rarely has the full story been told about how a famed botanist, a pioneering female journalist, and First Lady Helen Taft battled reluctant bureaucrats to bring Japanese cherry trees to Washington. 

The world’s most prominent actress risked her career by standing up to one of Hollywood’s mega-studios, proving that behind the beauty was also a very savvy businesswoman. 

Often thought to have been a weak president, Carter was strong-willed in doing what he thought was right, regardless of expediency or the political fallout.

Why have thousands of U.S. banks failed over the years? The answers are in our history and politics.

In his Second Inaugural Address, Abraham Lincoln embodied leading in a time of polarization, political disagreement, and differing understandings of reality.