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started by xowen11158 on 30 Dec 14
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    27) that draws together the findings of a generation of specialists whose research has most often focused on one region or one segment of the aristocratic elite. Figeac argues reasonably that the time has come - some twenty-five years after the publication of Chaussinand-Nogaret's classic text La noblesse au XVIIIe siècle, de la féodalité aux Lumières (1976) - to take stock of historians' new understanding of the eighteenth-century nobility. Figeac is well-positioned to provide such a synthesis, both because of his own important contributions to scholarship on the nobility in and around Bordeaux, and because, he says, the variety of the nobility in his chosen region of Aquitaine is ?tout à fait identique à celle du royaume? (p. 39). The growing commercial wealth of Bordeaux, the presence of both great families of the court and poor hobéraux in the countryside, the uneven dissemination of ?lumières? in the region, and the traditional political leadership of the robins in parlement all make Aquitaine representative of the fluid boundaries, the intra-estate cleavages, and the social and political challenges that characterized the experience of the French nobility as a whole in the eighteenth century. Figeac uses the example of Guyenne - he draws, for example, on his knowledge of the content of noble libraries, and on the impressive record of seigneurial innovation in viticulture over the course of the century - to establish illuminating parallels with other regions and to make careful generalizations about the ?automne des gentilshommes?.18 Figeac's mastery of the complexity and variety of nobles experiences is impressive, but the overriding themes of his work - diversity, fragmentation, paradox - raise the question of whether a new ?synthèse? is genuinely possible, or even desirable, within the analytical categories that have driven research on the nobility over the last twenty years and more. T shirt ralph lauren pas cher
    Figeac's study actually does little to alter the image of the second estate bequeathed by Forster, Bluche, Chaussinand-Nogaret, and the other historians whose findings overturned the Marxist paradigm in the 1960s and 1970s. Those luminaries had emphasized the nobility's lack of unity, the diversity of its economic interests, and its surprising cultural modernity, all of which contradicted Marxist assumptions about class conflict and the inevitable clash of opposing historical forces. Figeac focuses on many of the same indices that attracted the attention of the ?revisionist? historians of a generation ago?: incomes, marriage patterns, forms of sociability, the degree of contact with new ideas, the nature of nobles' economic activities. Although he discovers new gray areas and establishes even finer distinctions within the nobility than his predecessors had done - he cautions against drawing too sharp a contrast between rural and urban nobilities, for example - he, too, repeatedly stresses the ?multitude de nuances qui vidaient l'ordre de sa coherence, de son essence même? (p. 263). The nobility, he confirms, was ?un ordre Protée? that comprised a ?mosa?que aux intérêts divergents? (p. 48). doudoune sans manche soldes Quoting Pierre Serna, Figeac observes that the nobility ?offre partout un visage différent? (95), that it approached the Revolution ?plus divisée que jamais? (p. 223), and that it was unable or unwilling to defend itself effectively against attacks from outside and from within.19 All of this is undoubtedly true. But if ?le noble? is indeed ?introuvable,? to use Serna's words again, is it not time for historians of the French nobility to find a new angle of approach to their subject?? Instead of offering tentative or qualified generalizations about the social, economic, and intellectual experiences of a group that evidently lacked any unified sense of itself, it seems time to acknowledge that the important categories of social and political analysis for the eighteenth century operate below the level of the estate. By shifting attention to military nobles, urban nobles, enlightened nobles, court nobles, impoverished nobles, or libertine nobles, and by investigating the ways in which their status and consciousness as nobles inflected (or failed to inflect) the totality of their existence and their evolving sense of themselves, historians of the nobility may finally reconceptualize the role and function of ?nobility? in the social and political imaginary of a rapidly modernizing eighteenth century. Even the most sensitive analyses that focus on ?the nobility? as a global category are likely to yield results that, as in the case of L'automne des gentilshommes, ?[ne sont] finalement que le reflet de la fragmentation de l'ordre au niveau du Royaume? (p. 94). sac a main pas chere pour femme
    20 Jay M. SmithPhilippe GUIGNET (éd.), Le peuple des villes dans l'Europe du Nord-Ouest (fin du Moyen ?ge-1945), Lille, Centre de Recher ches sur l'Histoire de l'Europe du Nord- Ouest - Université Charles-de-Gaulle - Lille III, vol. 1, 2002 et vol. 2, 2003, 461 et 500 p.21 Rassemblant les actes de deux colloques organisés par le CRHEN-O aux mois de novembre 2000 et 2001, Philippe Guignet propose ici une très riche somme sur le peuple des villes européennes du Nord-Ouest durant les époques moderne et contemporaine, établie sur les vingt-quatre communications du premier volume et les vingt-neuf du second, chacun de ces tomes, en outre, étant introduit par le ma?tre d'?uvre lui-même qui, en plus de proposer une lecture pluriséculaire sur les courées lilloises, cl?t également cette entreprise monumentale par une conclusion générale invitant à la réflexion et à la poursuite de ces chantiers. Aussi la tache du chroniqueur se trouve-t-elle bien compliquée par l'ampleur et la variété des sujets abordés qui peuvent le saisir de vertige comme le reconna?t Philippe Guignet lui-même, démonstration sensible et éloquente de la contribution majeure de ces colloques à la précision de notre connaissance historique sur ce ?peuple des villes?, exclu de l'avoir, du pouvoir et du savoir.

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