Myth Of The French Bourgeoisie / Edition 1

Myth Of The French Bourgeoisie / Edition 1

by Sarah Maza
     
 

ISBN-10: 0674017692

ISBN-13: 9780674017696

Pub. Date: 03/01/2005

Publisher: Harvard University Press

Who, exactly, were the French bourgeoisie? Unlike the Anglo-Americans, who widely embraced middle-class ideals and values, the French--even the most affluent and conservative--have always rejected and maligned bourgeois values and identity.

In this new approach to the old question of the bourgeoisie, Sarah Maza focuses on the crucial period before, during, and

Overview

Who, exactly, were the French bourgeoisie? Unlike the Anglo-Americans, who widely embraced middle-class ideals and values, the French--even the most affluent and conservative--have always rejected and maligned bourgeois values and identity.

In this new approach to the old question of the bourgeoisie, Sarah Maza focuses on the crucial period before, during, and after the French Revolution, and offers a provocative answer: the French bourgeoisie has never existed. Despite the large numbers of respectable middling town-dwellers, no group identified themselves as bourgeois. Drawing on political and economic theory and history, personal and polemical writings, and works of fiction, Maza argues that the bourgeoisie was never the social norm. In fact, it functioned as a critical counter-norm, an imagined and threatening embodiment of materialism, self-interest, commercialism, and mass culture, which defined all that the French rejected.

A challenge to conventional wisdom about modern French history, this book poses broader questions about the role of anti-bourgeois sentiment in French culture, by suggesting parallels between the figures of the bourgeois, the Jew, and the American in the French social imaginary. It is a brilliant and timely foray into our beliefs and fantasies about the social world and our definition of a social class.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674017696
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
03/01/2005
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
268
Product dimensions:
0.61(w) x 6.00(h) x 9.00(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction: Is There a Class in This Text?

1. The Social Imaginary in Prerevolutionary France

2. Commerce, Luxury, and Family Love

3. Revolutionary Brotherhood and the War against Aristocracy

4. The Social World after Thermidor

5. The Political Birth of the Bourgeoisie, 1815-1830

6. The Failure of "Bourgeoisie Monarchy"

Conclusion: The Bourgeois, the Jew, and the American

Notes

Index

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >