Napoleon: Hero or villain?

16 March 2016

On Tuesday 1st March, the French department had the pleasure to welcome back Dr Kate Astbury from Warwick University for her Lecture on Napoleon. The big question was whether he was a hero or a villain. Our Year 10 to 13 pupils learnt about the different stages of his dynastic Empire which undid many of the gains of the Revolution. Long before his defeat at Waterloo he had lost the aura which surrounded him at the start of his reign, in part because of his allies` repeated representations of him as someone in league with the Devil, a charlatan, a pantomime figure. Many of the satirical prints of the time are a testimony to this (see photographs).

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