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Notes on video lecture:
What were People of 18th Century France Reading?
Choose from these words to fill the blanks below:
best, love, Julie, pornography, group, army, kills, social, circulating, 1781, Rousseau, Neuchâtel, sexual, pirate, ribald, secular, Émile, God, price, Suppers, manners, nun, noble, permission, strong, Fear, hunting, money, Mornet, wrong, women, really
what were people in 18th century France reading?
Encyclopédie
this work had a            that only a thin section of society could hope to afford
Rousseau
his most radical and revolutionary works were not comparatively popular
                        , ou De l’éducation
Du contrat              ou Principes du droit politique
Daniel              in the 1900s reviewed 500 libraries of people from 18th century, found one copy of The Social Contract
most popular works
          , ou la nouvelle Héloïse
romantic novel of sensibilities, a novel of               
we have no          seller lists from there 18th century
two kinds of books:
received full public                      from regime
received only tacit permission
included the more radical works
1980s Robert Darnton research on "bad books"
found that there was a              industry of producing inexpensive copies of revolutionary works outside of France and getting them into the borders
in Britain and                               , Switzerland
looking at illegal books tells you want people              wanted to read
25,000 pirate editions of the Encyclopedie existed
not only cheap pirate editions shipped into France, but another genre of books
low-quality books with political and                        themes
"Venus in the cloister, or the        in the nightshirt"
the Falsity of Miracles
Social Contract (Rousseau)
one can conclude that people wanted to get their hands on obscenity,              literature, and banned Enlightenment works
the authorities tended to            these together and called them "bad books"
what was particularly explosive was that the obscene soft porn literature was targeting the            class, the clergy, and indeed, the king himself
Louis XVI married Marie-Antoinette
he was 15, she was 14
under French Royal law, there can only be a king of France, not a Queen
it takes them 8 years to produce a child and it's a girl
finally in          a son is born
he died in 1789
mockery of the king's              incapacity became politically explosive
not just the alleged impotency of the king but it suggests that the regime itself is in trouble
Marie Antoinette becomes a target of this mockery as well
these underground authors suggest in their writings that she is such a              woman that she has effectively emasculated the king
this seems to symbolize what has gone            with the regime in general
since the king was there by the grace of       , this mockery was also religiously explosive
Louis is also mocked that he rather goes                than run his realm
he keeps a diary of the birds and animals that his hunting party           , averaging 20-30 per day
on lists that were found of what bookstores ordered from foreign book producers, there were:
The Little                at the Hôtel de Bouillon
"little suppers" were euphemisms for sexual orgies
Louis XV's private life
Louis XV's orgies
the devil in the baptismal font
                's latest book
Marie-Antoinette's hobbies
the allegation that comes through this literature is that the aristocracy can no longer fight, conduct foreign policy, nor make         
Chevalier d'Eon
commonly seen dressed as a woman
rumors that he cross-dressed
fought in the         
was a perfect occasion for these writers to mock the aristocracy and monarchy
Enlightenment writers such as Diderot would dabble in this type of ribald literature when they needed the           
Paris
literature is widely distributed
a literate city
the vast majority of people could read and write
           are less literate
information was commonly passed via market places
countryside
85% of France lived in small, rural communities
50% of men, 25% of women could sign their marriage acts
colporteurs went from village to village selling printed literature for people to read aloud at family gatherings
"Bibliotheque bleue"
medieval horror stories
witches, superstitions, spells
anything but Enlightenment literature
Almanach
               information
e.g. how to watch out for pickpockets
rather than about the lives of the Saints
had nothing to do with the Enlightenment
hence one can conclude that the Enlightenment was an urban phenomenon
but one of the major movements of the French Revolution was The Great         , the fear of the peasant revolt
this can't be explained in terms of the peasants having Enlightenment ideas such as Rousseau or the Encyclopedie
the could afford these works
the illegal books weren't                        to any significant extent through the countryside which were mocking the monarchy and the court
An Introduction to the French Revolution
The Essentials of 18th Century France
18th Century French Clergy and Nobility
The Importance of Regionalism and Locality in 18th Century France
The Contribution of the Philosophes to the French Revolution
What were People of 18th Century France Reading?
The Atlantic Democratic Revolution and the Republic of Letters
1780s France Financial Crisis and its Repercussions
The Third Estate in Revolt
The Peasantry in Revolt
The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen
The October Days
1789-91: Making the New Nation
Unresolved Issues of the Revolution
The Turning Point in Church Reform