Realms of Memory: The Construction of the French Past (Volume 3)

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Overview

Archives, monuments, celebrations:there are not merely the recollections of memory but also the foundations of history. Symbols, the third and final volume in Pierre Nora's monumental Realms of Memory, includes groundbreaking discussions of the emblems of France's past by some of the nation's most distinguished intellectuals. The seventeen essays in this book consider such diverse "sites" of memory as the figures of Joan D'Arc and Decartes, the national motto of "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity", the tricolor flag and the French language itself. Pierre Nora's closing essay on commemoration provides a culminating overview of the series. Offering a new approach on history, culture, French studies and the studies of symbols, Realms of Memory reveals how the myriad meanings we attach to places and events constitute our sense of history.

Volume 1: Winner of the 1996 French-American Foundation Translation Award

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Editorial Reviews

Chicago Tribune

This unusual book deals fascinatingly with everything from the creation of the rousing anthem "La Marseillaise" to the changing role of Joan of Arc in France's collective memory. Even the Eiffel Tower shines forth in surprising new facets.

Foreign Affairs

This is an indispensable guide to understanding France and the French. As usual, Arthur Goldhammer's translation is superb.

Lingua Franca

Provides arresting genealogies of a number of the major cleavages in French history, with chapters on the embattled relationship of Jews to the French republic, the peculiar affinities of Gaulism and Communism, and... Paris' haughty condescension toward la province.... Without resorting to polemics, the volume reminds us that the image of the French past is confected as much out of amnesia as out of memory.

The New Republic

A magnificent achievement.... [The essays included] are the high-carat jewels of the project.

Times Literary Supplement

A magisterial attempt to define what it is to be French.

Chicago Tribune
This unusual book deals fascinatingly with everything from the creation of the rousing anthem "La Marseillaise" to the changing role of Joan of Arc in France's collective memory. Even the Eiffel Tower shines forth in surprising new facets.
Foreign Affairs
This is an indispensable guide to understanding France and the French. As usual, Arthur Goldhammer's translation is superb.
Lingua Franca
Provides arresting genealogies of a number of the major cleavages in French history, with chapters on the embattled relationship of Jews to the French republic, the peculiar affinities of Gaulism and Communism, and . . . Paris' haughty condescension toward la province . . . . Without resorting to polemics, the volume reminds us that the image of the French past is confected as much out of amnesia as out of memory.
New Republic
A magnificent achievement.... [The essays included] are the high-carat jewels of the project.
Times Literary Supplement
A magisterial attempt to define what it is to be French.
Booknews
A revised and abridged translation of the original work in French, "Les Liux de M<'e>moire", Editions Gallimard, 1992. The first of this three-volume English language edition explores the political, religious, geopolitical, and generational clashes that structure France's self-definition. It is a meditation on how the French construct their past through symbols, allusions, and associations. The 14 essays begin with discussion of political clashes and shifting conceptions of political meaning, which is followed by analysis of sites and events of religious conflicts. A section on issues of time and place, analyzing the cleavages that separate Paris and province, north and south, and human generations concludes the volume. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Booknews
This final volume of three contains 17 essays addressing memory, symbols, and the foundations of history written by a group of highly distinguished French intellectuals. This revised and abridged translation of the original French edition published by Editions Gallimard in 1992 is preceded by two volumes addressing the descriptive sites of division and the constitutive sites of tradition. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Lawrence Kritzman is the Pat and John Rosenwald Research Professor in the Arts and Sciences and Professor of French and Comparative Literature at Dartmouth. He is the series editor of our European Perspectives series and the editor of Politics, Philosophy, Culture: Interviews and Other Writings, 1977-1984 by Michel Foucault (Routledge, 1990). His publications include: The Rhetoric of Sexuality and the Literature of the French Renaissance (Cambridge, 1991), Auschwitz and After: Race, Culture, and "the Jewish Question" in France (Routledge, 1994), and several monographs published in French (French Forum Publishers).

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Table of Contents

Introduction - Pierre Nora

Part I: Emblems1. The Three Colors: Neither White nor Red, Raoul Girardet2. La Marseillaise: War or Peace, Michel Vovelle3. Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, Mona Ozouf4. Bastille Day: From Dies Irae to Holiday, Christian Almavi

Part II: Major Sites1. Lascaux, Jean-Paul Demoule2. Reims, City of Coronation, Jacques Le Goff3. The Louvre, Royal Residence and Temple of the Arts, Jean-Pierre Babelon4. Versailles, the Image of the Sovereign, Edouard Pommier5. The Pantheon, The Ecole Normale of the Dead, Mona Ozouf6. The Eiffel Tower, Henry Loyette7. Verdun, Antoine Prost

Part III: Identifications1. The Gallic Cock, Michael Pastoureau2. Joan of Arc, Michael Winock3. Descartes, Francois Azouvi4. Paris, A Traversal from East to West, Maurice Agulhon5. The Genius of the French Language, Marc Fumaroli6. The Era of Commemoration, Pierre Nora

Notes Index of NamesIndex of Subjects

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