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The Great Cat Massacre: And Other Episodes in French Cultural Historyby Robert Darnton
Synopses & Reviews
When the apprentices of a Paris printing shop in the 1730's held a series of mock trials and then hanged all the cats they could lay their hands on, why did they find it so hilariously funny that they choked with laughter when they reenacted it in pantomime some twenty times? Why in the 18th century version of "Little Red Riding Hood" did the wolf eat the child at the end? What did the anonymous townsman of Montpelier have in mind when he kept an exhaustive dossier on all the activities of his native city? These are some of the provocative questions Robert Darnton attempts to answer in this dazzling series of essays that probe the ways of thought in what we like to call "The Age of Enlightenment."
Examines the history and culture of eighteenth-century France as it provides a view of the people of the cities, towns, and countryside during the Age of Enlightenment.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
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