Burleigh Hendrickson

Burleigh Hendrickson

Assistant Professor of French and Francophone Studies


French Empire, Decolonial/Postcolonial Studies, The Global 1960s, Transnational and Comparative History, Dignity and Human Rights


Ph.D., World History, Northeastern University, 2014
M.A., History, Portland State University, 2006
B.A., French and History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2001

Professional Bio

Burleigh Hendrickson is a scholar of French Empire and decolonization. His research and teaching apply transnational and comparative approaches to the history of the Francophone world, with emphasis on the Maghreb and West Africa. His book, Decolonizing 1968: Transnational Student Activism in Tunis, Paris, and Dakar (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2022) was awarded the French Colonial Historical Society’s 2023 Alf Andrew Heggoy Prize for best book published in the preceding year dealing with the French colonial experience from 1815 to the present. Decolonizing 1968 focuses on the postcolonial relationships between France and its former colonies during the global protests of 1968. Combining extensive, multi-sited archival research with the oral histories of former activists, his research makes visible the enduring links between France and its ex-colonies at the end of formal empire. He is also interested in cultures of protest, knowledge production, and historical claims for human dignity. He is the past recipient of Mellon research and writing fellowships from the Council for European Studies and the Social Science Research Council (IDRF), as well as a Fulbright-Hays Fellowship the Society for French Historical Studies. More recently, he received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award to France to carry out research on his second book project, “Losing Empire: Dignity and Indignation from the Enlightenment to the Arab Spring. Outside of the field and the classroom, he is a lifelong pug enthusiast, a devoted college basketball fan, and an aspiring carpenter.

 Recent Courses:

  • French 332 (French Culture and Civilization II)
  • French 139 (Introduction to France and the Francophone World)
  • French 497 (French Protest Culture)
  • French 597 (Dignity and Indignation in France and the Francophone World)


  • “Postcolonial Studies Meets Global History: Rendez-vous in the Francophone World,” Historical Reflections/ Réflexions Historiques 50:1 (forthcoming 2024): 26pp.
  • “Postcolonial Tunisian Networks of Dignity in 1968 and the Arab Spring,” Journal of the Western Society for French History 49 (forthcoming): 24pp.
  • Decolonizing 1968: Transnational Student Activism in Tunis, Paris, and Dakar (Cornell University Press, 2022).
  • “Periphery and Intimacy in Anti-Imperial Culture and Politics: From French Others to Othering Frenchness,” in French Politics, Culture, and Society, 38:2 (2020): 105-125.
  • “Why Do We Still Care About 1968?” The Sixties: A Journal of History, Politics, and Culture 11:2 (2018): 237-240. (Review Essay)
  • “From the Archives to the Streets: Listening to the Global 1960s in the Former French Empire,” French Historical Studies 40:2 (2017): 319-342.
  • “The Politics of Colonial History: Bourguiba, Senghor, and the Student Movements of the Global 1960s,” in Global Sixties: Conventions, Contests, and Countercultures, ed. by Tamara Chaplin and Jadwiga Pieper (Routledge, 2017), 13-32.
  • “Finding Tunisia in the Global 1960s,” Monde(s): histoires, espaces, relations 11 (2017): 61-78.
  • “Student Activism and the Birth of the Tunisian Human Rights Movement, 1968-1978,” in Mouvements étudiants en Afrique francophone, des indépendances à nos jours, ed. by Françoise Blum et al. (Publications de la Sorbonne, 2016), 233-247.
  • “Global France and the Global 1960s: The Cannibalization of French Studies or the Pathway to Its Future?” Perspectives on Europe 45:1 (2015): 111-116.
  • “Qu’est-ce que la postcolonialité ? Vers une définition pluraliste,” in Postcolonial Studies: modes d’emploi, ed. by Florian Alix et al. (Presses universitaires de Lyon, 2013), 155-173.
  • “March 1968: Practicing Transnational Activism From Tunis to Paris,” International Journal of Middle East Studies 44:4 (2012): 755-774.
  • “Migrations intellectuelles, Indépendance Inachevée et 1968 à Dakar et à Tunis,” Migrance 39 (2012): 110-122.