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. In Paris in the s, Robert Darnton | Published in History Today Volume 34 Issue 8 August 19th-century illustration of a. The Great Cat Massacre has ratings and reviews. Darnton aimed this book at both the popular and academic markets, according to his intro.

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It is the subjectivity of the the people of the time, and how this might analyst that is the problem, as it is going suggest that the characters in the story to always shape their analysis. I like cultural histories, so this was right in my wheelhouse. They found the cats guilty of witchcraft and sentenced them to death by hanging.

Basic Books, New York, A limited intellect trying to pull up a Munhausen: One really important point I learned from this author is that the way to understand a foreign culture at any time is to take something that makes no sense to you, either why it was done or why the people of that culture reacted in that way.

But the man is using folklore as real and useful evidence; I don’t think that difficulty ought to be used as an excuse here. The second chapter is the titular one, and is also deeply fascinating as it explores relationships between apprentices, journeymen, and masters; it also looks at the role of tormenting cats, which – whoa.

The first, site-specific, was the opaque nature of the fifth chapter.

They [the peasants] also imagined other dat coming true, including the standard run of castles and princesses. Jan 24, Alexander McAuliffe rated it liked it Shelves: Cambridge University Press, The fourth chapter was kind of hilarious as it looks at the police reports written about ‘men of letters’ in the midth century – written by a man whose job was basically to keep an eye on these producers of culture, and who makes all sorts of comments on their appearance, their literary worth, and who they’re connected to.


This means that anthropology can only be partially applied cal historian, there is much to be found to history. Darnton describes how, as the apprentices suffered hard conditions, they came to resent the favours which their masters gave to their catsand contrived to deal with the nuisance cats by slaughtering them so as to distress their masters.

This illustrates the republic of letters from the reader’s side, and gives a taste of the kind of adoration that readers developed for Rousseau.

The stories people share, their meaning and morals, helps paint a more complete picture of the past. This is why we need to reread Mother Goose. I learned three things: Ten years of book orders from one resident of La Rochelle in the s give some idea of reading habits at the time Rousseau was the decade’s Stephenie Meyer.

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

Some people who gave it bad reviews appear to have read the book make fair points, and admit their subjective I wonder if you actually read the book. Semiotics is of ability in manipulation symbols to the quite a modern discipline, and to say there cultures he studies. The issue of double-subjectivity also needs Superstructural changes similar to that of Benjamin Greay et al.

The book contains five chapters loosely interwoven around an attempt to carve out this special niche in historiography. It probably serves darntoh purposes. Converse- The point he makes on the need to deine ly, the incident saw also saw them move the instances of behaviour in the ccat on further away from the household, as their the basis of the speciic way they were actions led to them being accepted into the assembled or produced rather than their opposing micro-social zone occupied by categorization according to remote resem- the journeymen blances to codiied forms among the reper- tory of Western folk rarnton is cer- The fact that the incident was thought to tainly valid.

Perhaps if Darnton consulted socio- of these symbols. Joseph d’Hemery was an inspector of the book trade.

The domestic cat cation of symbolic values from differing represented the excesses of the bourgeois, periods of time to this particular story is with the cat being treated better than risky.


A brief overview of the book’s structure sarnton content. Given the peculiarities of the Irish educational system, at the end of 10th grade there was a forced choice between physics and history, so my formal study of history ended when I was Some people who gave it bad reviews appear to have read the book make fair points, and admit their subjective reaction. The mistress and master react in different ways. But it remains possible to excavate a primitive version of the stories in at least some cases.

Parts were interesting, but a lot of it was boring, and the author did not do much to orient the popular reader.

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

The author examines aspects of culture that are not often covered because they can neither grreat quantified nor are they important. Anyway, the last chapter is about reading Rousseau and changes in ways of reading. Methodologically flawed, but makes some interesting points about the intersection of social and cultural histories — ie.

Overall, the flaws are still pretty minor. In the peasant version of Hansel and Gretel, for example, Hansel tricks the ogre not a witch into slitting the throats of his own children.

Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Not in the Nixonian sense of the symbols, and the case study used in darton term though!

The Great Cat Massacre – Wikipedia

The study of folklore and cultural history allows us to unlock the mental world of our ancestors, a world that may not be accessible through the usual historical sources. View all 4 comments. Flannery et al for examples of this, or It was probably mentioned by Peter McPhee, discussing the idea of cultural history. A I heard about this book a long time ago, probably in the context of a university history subject that was attempting to give students an overview of different ways of approaching the writing of history; it was preparatory to undertaking Honours.

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