collection which Darnton has so successfully mined over the years. Some of them incidentally, is the chapter dealing with the great cat massacre, which as. THE GREAT. CAT MASSACRE. AND OTHER EPISODES. IN FRENCH. CULTURAL HISTORY. Robert Darnton. BASIC. B. BOOKS. A Member of the Perseus. The literature itself, Darnton asserts that when analysing popu- like all literature The Great Cat Massacre of Rue Saint-Séverin10 past always contains a ‘silent.

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Thoth Harris I wonder if you actually read the book. This further illustrates the conlict between the material and symbolic forms of anthro- In conclusion, anthropology and semiot- pology in their use for cultural historical ics have to be used carefully in the analysis purposes. The second essay looks at the way artisans workers in a printing grear interpreted their world, their own economic prospects and the different interests geat their employers, in a period prior to the industrial revolution, though with early capitalist formations altering their landscape.

Darnton,pp Do social conditions determine popular beliefs?

The Great Cat Massacre – Wikipedia

And, for the encyclopedia section, include the dates of the prior encyclopedias used for comparison? Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. For this reason, Cat Massacre either in whole or just its title chapter is regularly assigned in both undergraduate and graduate Historiography classes across the country.

The second chapter is the titular one, and is also deeply fascinating as it explores relationships between apprentices, journeymen, and masters; it also looks grdat the role of tormenting cats, which – whoa. These have darntkn preserved in written form, altered to se This is collection of essays, greta all serving a common purpose, and it would be sufficiently interesting to write a review discussing any one of them.

To ask other readers questions about The Great Dafnton Massacreplease sign up. It is a rather exotic journey. One of them involves a girl going to have sex with two men so she can make her mind up which one she wants. Over thirty years later, the work is still an exemplar of Cultural History. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The Great Cat Massacre: The master hired and fired men as casually as he ordered paper, and he turned them out onto the road when he sniffed insubordination An extensive description of the town of Montpellier in by an anonymous but solidly bourgeois dafnton provides a remarkable glimpse of the power structure, relationships between the different classes and prevailing attitudes.


Robert Darnton challenges the widely held assumption that cultural systems derive from social orders, and takes the beetle’s eye view, picking out quirky sources that reveal the viewpoint of the dafnton, dissecting what they say to then draw conclusions about the world they lived in.

It showed that history books didn’t have to be dull and it re-awakened a curiosity I thought had been stifled. The second chapter of Cat Massacre is both the title chapter and the most famous piece of the larger work.

In the early s, this process exemplified an emerging historical tradition that was—and indeed still is—known as Cultural History. But it is wonderfully written, sets the context for peasant life beautifully acknowledging the problematic nature of ‘generic peasant’and does some really intriguing stuff in looking at variations in folkloric traditions within France and then between France and England, Italy, and Germany.

I had two issues with reading the book. Flannery et al for examples of this, or A grsat overview of the book’s structure and content.

Enter the email address you signed up with and we’ll email gfeat a reset link. Be the first to ask a question about The Great Cat Massacre. Naturally, I’ve ended up regretting that particular gap in my education ever since.

At a time when a little over 40 percent of children died before the age of ten, the early modern French peasant had no time for niceties. The discussion is too massavre to paraphrase.

In his book the Great cat Mas- 88 and lacapra,p. Whether this is so they can start something that can have an exclusive committee so they can continue to feel superior and have cocktail parties to entertain themselves or they really care that much about the animals is a moot point.

The great cat massacre and other episodes in French cultural history

How far LaCapra all agree. Probably a bit biased going into it, having absorbed much of the criticism against it by cultural osmosis, but a very interesting read. Even in that chapter on peasants it felt like there was an emphasis on men – he uses the Perrault versions of the stories as his ‘literary’ comparisons, and of course the Grim brothers, and acknowledges that Jeanette Hassenpflug was the latter’s source, but Marie Catherine d’Aulnoy gets one mention only.


The best essays are the title piece and the analysis of folktales; the glimpse into 18th century reading habits is also pretty irresistible. He warns the reader off the idea of thinking you can completely ‘understand’ people, but suggests this as a way of better grasping how people approached their world.

The Great Cat Massacre: And Other Episodes in French Cultural History by Robert Darnton

For instance, consider the chapter about the Montpellier procession of dignitaries. Aug 25, Michael Kleen rated it it was amazing. Each chapter is an isolated case-study in its own right. The tices would have struck a chord with the journeymen were unhappy at their loss of literate working class who had endured status in the workplace, lack of job security their own apprenticeships. The book containing this account, The Great Cat Massacre and Massacrd Episodes in French Cultural Historyhas become one of Darnton’s grest popular writings; it has been published in eighteen languages.

I suppose masacre was no great surprise to find that, although the book wasn’t quite as brilliant or as fascinating as I remembered, it still held up pretty well. I have become a major history reader since then, and I think this book helped.

Paperbackpages. My favorite thing about this book is the writer’s approach to history – each of these essays is structured around masscare artifact of the times that he can use as an entry point to a world that was torn asunder in The rating is for the first essay alone.