He was elected by his native département to the National Convention of the French Republic in 1792, where he sat until 1795; Lakanal was one of the noted administrators of the French Revolution. At the time of his election, he was acting as vicar to his uncle Bernard Font (1723-1800), the constitutional bishop of Pamiers. In the Convention, he sat with The Mountain and voted for the execution of King Louis XVI.
The project, to which Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès also contributed, was refused by the Convention, who submitted the whole question to a special Commission of six, which, under the influence of Maximilien Robespierre, adopted a report by Louis-Michel Le Peletier de Saint-Fargeau (shortly before his tragic death).
Lakanal, who was a member of the commission, now began to work for the organization of higher education, and, abandoning the principle of his Projet, advocated the establishment of state-aided schools for primary, secondary and university education. In October 1793, he was sent by the Convention to the south-western départements and did not return to Paris until after the revolution of Thermidor that toppled Robespierre.
In 1799 he was sent by the Directory to organize the defence of the four départments on the left bank of the Rhine (in Alsace and Lorraine), threatened by the invasion of counter-Revolution forces (the Second Coalition).
He returned to France in 1834, and published in 1838 an Expos sommaire des travaux de Joseph Lakanal. Shortly afterwards, in spite of his advanced age, Lakanal married a second time. He died in Paris; his widow died in 1881. Lakanal's éloge at the Academy of Moral and Political Science, of which he was a member, was pronounced by the Comte de Rémusat (February 16, 1845), and a Notice historique by François Mignet was read on May 2, 1857.
There's So Much Smoke in Here.We Can't Get out; Desperate Last Phone Calls of Victims Trapped in the Tower Block Inferno
Jul 05, 2009; Byline: Helen Dowd and Matt Sandy A YOUNG mother who died with her two toddlers in the South London tower block inferno made a...