Origine du prénom Wenceslas (Oeuvres courtes) (French Edition)
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Gli autografi dei letterati italiani. Bartoli Langeli, Autografia e paleografia; P.
Trovato, Autografi e storia della lingua; G. Petoletti, I segni della memoria: Battaglia Ricci, Edizioni d'autore, copie di lavoro, interventi di autoesegesi: Cursi, Percezione dell'autografia e tradizione dell'autore; J. Gentile, Questioni di autografia nel Quattrocento fiorentino ; C. Vecce, Scrittura, creazione, lavoro intellettuale alla fine del Quattrocento; M.
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Campanelli, Autografia e filologia alle origini della stampa; B. Bausi, Tipologia degli autografi machiavelliani; R. Bragantini, La prosa d'invenzione tra autografi e stampe ; Tavola rotonda sul tema: Gli autografi in biblioteca: Liitticher Schultext in Handschriften der mittelalterlichen Dombibliothek; M. Johnstone, Rebuilding Chaucer's 'House of Fame': Sutherland Harris, ' Per cultellum': Kwakkel, Lost in translation: Michael Scot and the oldest manuscript of his 'Abbreviatio Avicenne'; M.
Kluge, Comparative observations on the development of a culture of writing and of archives in the imperial free cities in the later Middle Ages: Crivello, I Longobardi e il manoscritto di lusso. Elementi testuali per la storia della miniature; G. Muratova, Alle origini dell'iniziale zoomorfa ; G. Orofino, Monte-cassino nell'ottavo secolo. Le radici umanistiche dell'Europa. Manfredi, Salutati e le biblioteche pubbliche. Els espais de l'escriptura medieval.
Las cartas papales anteriores a ; A. Un espacio para la escritura: Mandingorra Llavata, La escritura epistolar. Escandell Proust, L'espai als manuscrits illuminais medievals: Reglero de la Fuente, Nombrar, localizar y delimitar -.
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Giving a small taste. Poetry and its contexts in eleventh-century Byzantium Ghent, Koninklijke Academie voor nederlandse taal-en letterkunde. Bentein, A corpus of eleventh-century manuscript epigrams; M. Lauxtermann, Two manuscripts in search of an author: Clarke 15 and Mark the Monk.
Vecchio, ' Quasi armarium scriptorum. Con-cordio come biblioteca vivente; A. Caproni, La biblioteca privata e il sogno di un caso ; F. Canali, Spazi e tipologie architettonici delle biblioteche umanistiche: Firenze, Cesena e Urbino; C. Bianca, Le biblioteche dell'Italia meridionale nel Rinascimento ; C. Castelli, La biblioteca scientifica di Federico da Montefeltro ; P.
Floriani, La biblioteca degli scrittori di lettere; G. Benzoni, Una biblioteca in periferia; L. Ragionamenti intorno ad una raccolta dei libri proibiti a Perugia tra ' e '; A. Gorris, Nella biblioteca della duchessa: Torrini, Le biblioteche di Galileo e dei galileiani; G. Giannarelli, La biblioteca di Cesarea:. Cec-carelli Lemut, Una biblioteca virtuale. Gargan, Le biblioteche dei Certosini; R. Rusconi, Le biblioteche degli ordini religiosi fra Rinascimento e Controriforma. He was active at the court of King Manfred of Sicily , where he might have been the 'headmaster' of a circle of translators in the service of the king.
The conference we are organizing has a twofold purpose. First of all, to get a better understanding of Bartholomew of Messina the translator, just as the Leuven conference has considerably contributed to a better understanding of William of Moerbeke's life and works. Second, to highlight the intellectual and cultural milieu at the court of King Manfred and so situate Bartholomew in a broader context. Comparative mysticism of the Middle Ages: Anglo-Saxon texts and writers. Call for papers until Call for papers bis zum Advances in paper conservation research London, British Library.
Call for paper closed on Encyclopaedic trends in Byzantium? Lazaris, Sur la constitution textes et miniatures de la 'collection des chirurgiens grecs' xe-xf s. Touwaide, Medical encyclopaedic literature provisional title ; M. Florilegia, miscellanea, and other collections: Fernandez, Unknown and less-known texts in the Florilegium Coislinianum.
Writing as material practice: Call for papers closed on Is this category appropriate for characterising past forms of graphical symbolic expression?
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The conference aims to promote an exchange between those of different disciplines working on geographical ideas and thinking from late Antiquity to the Renaissance on the themes of 'Translation, transmission, transculturation, and. Representations, Knowledge and Identities, A. Madrid, Centro de Ciencias Humanas y Sociales. The conference will study this phenomenon with regard to the interacting dimensions of representations, knowledge and identities. Knowledge includes not only science but also forms of practical, social as well as other forms of knowledge.
Aspects of these processes have been studied by single disciplines in an isolated manner.
Paris As Revolution
Principal questions of the conference include: Los protagonistas de la escritura. Studies in the Exeter Book. By the end of the project, in June , descriptions and digital images of over manuscripts will be available to all at the click of a mouse: Collectors, librarians and the book trade. Monasteries and secular authorities in the pre-millenial medieval world St. By considering monasteries as institutions, but also their members as individual actors, the conference will help to define the various settings in which they operated within the political landscape, as well as in reference to one another where relationships could involve either conflict or co-operation.
Maps, myths and narratives: Call for papers closed on 1. Not surprisingly perhaps, the early cartography of the Far North has been characterized by a blurring of the boundaries between fact and fiction, and a strong interplay between textual sources and cartography. This, however, far from being an exclusive trait of the North, may be readily acknowledged for many regions of the world.
In fact, the intermingling of observation and imagination is as crucial to the creation of meaning in cartography in particular as it is to the sciences and arts in general. The ICHC focuses on the four main themes that are briefly outlined below. However, contributions on any other aspect of the history of cartography are very welcome. Clearly, the most frequent cases are those inbetween, that is, miscellanies which may be interpreted as designed but whose origin might have also included the aspect of the random.
Is there a plan or a reason behind? If so, what does the selection tells about the compiler's interests? Is there a personal touch discernable and interpretable? Can a specific use of a particular miscellany be detected? Poets, priests, scribes and e- librarians. The transmission of holy wisdom in Zoroastrianism Salamanca. It intends also to offer an overview and description of the different collections of manuscripts all over the world, its catalogues, state of preservation and accessibility.
Although the main focus of the conference is the transmission of the Avesta, the conference would like also to cover the transmission of other Zoroastrian texts, especially the Pahlavi books, since they share some of the problems of the Avesta transmission. The conference theme will be Book production. Si il s'agit de peuples parlant aujourd'hui une langue celtique, la carte sera presque vide.
Si l'on parle des anciens celtes, il faudrait dater les cartes: Il est donc difficile d'admettre que les Celtes redeviennent majoritaires subitement en Espagne! Chariots apparemment absents d'Espagne ou du Portugal. Moralejo semble confirmer ce fait http: Tu fais semblant de mal lire. Qu'est-ce que tu fais ici, alors? S'en tenir aux celtologues, c'est virer une bonne partie des sources du wiki. Idem pour le Larousse ou le TLFi. Ce qui ne nous avance pas beaucoup. Mais comme la source le confirme, si l'on exclue la langue, il ne reste qu'un magma flou.
Je crois que tu n'as toujours pas compris le principe d'une discussion wiki: Cette page est faite pour argumenter, sourcer, confirmer, opposer des points de vue. Mais on a la Dame de Vix et d'autres exemples qui contrebalancent Par exemple Collis, Garcia, Goudineau, etc. Un p'ti mis au jour, svp. For the second time, Doris Kretschmer shepherded a manuscript of mine through the University of California Press. Every author should be so well served. My greatest debt, once again, is to Robert A. If, like the ship on the seal of Paris, this book rides the waves, it is surely because of his navigational skills, his enthusiasm for the project, and above all his certitude that the boat was really sailing.
The year made Paris the city of revolution, and it remained so for the century that followed. The city had been the theater of the Revolution in the s, and for almost the whole of the nineteenth century it set the stage for revolution yet to come. The nineteenth century could neither contain the Revolution as a current event, though it would try, nor relegate it to the immobility of the past.
The Revolution was, instead, a vital social phenomenon that had to be reengaged, redefined, and reimagined by each succeeding generation. And if Paris was, in Walter Benjamin's brilliant characterization, the "capital of the nineteenth century," it was because revolution haunted the present and the future of the city even more than its past.
The history of the French Revolution was always written in the present tense. Nineteenth-century observers could scarcely escape the confrontation of city and revolution. The profoundly urban character of the Revolution, contemporaries agreed, had a great deal to do with the decidedly revolutionary nature of the rapidly transforming urban scene. Given the connection, it was imperative that Paris be explored and known again and again.
Knowing, in this sense, would always be a complicated business. Inevitably caught up in the turmoil, writers focused so obsessively on the city because it seemed to hold the key to an explosive past no less than to a bewildering future. Paris as Revolution locates the originality of nineteenth-century fiction in this convergence, in the intense commitment of these writers to knowing the city and to dramatizing that knowledge.
Paris produces far more than the background for the tales these novels tell; it furnishes the terms of the narrative itself. These writings do not just talk about revolution in the city; they stage the city as itself revolutionary, and on many levels at once. Paris served quite literally as a revolutionary stage. The concentration of energies and institutions, like the density and volatility of population, exacerbated the inherently public character of the Revolution. From the Festivals of Reason and Federation on the Champ de Mars to the carts of prisoners trundled about Paris, the Revolution put the political on display.
So much of what has come to be thought of as modern about the events of derived from the translation of politics into everyday life, where every move, every speech, every article of clothing, made a public statement. Every engaged citizen appeared on stage at every moment. These politics of publicity connect Paris in revolution to modernity. The delicately balanced, even at times slightly perverse relation of the observer to the observed, which Baudelaire made so important a feature of the modern metropolis, actually begins in revolution and then proclaims itself in the revolutions that disrupted Paris after In the public arena, it became as essential to be seen, and be judged, as it was to see, and judge.
Sorting out the signs of revolution meant ordering the city in a complex interaction of political identity, social setting, and cultural practice. A convenient label after , "postrevolutionary" begs more questions than it answers. Where should we stand to determine what revolutionary meant, and might mean still?
Do we mean revolution in the city or revolution of the city? Must postrevolutionary imply that revolution has somehow ended? From the vantage point of the late twentieth century, "prerevolutionary" is surely as appropriate at any given moment prior to for a society that overthrew or established three monarchies, three republics, and two empires in just over eighty years.
Radical political dislocation consumed the century, and its concomitant, revolution, became the antithesis of a discrete event. Revolution became a state of mind, a heightened consciousness of the fragility of social institutions, and an acute sense of the possibility of continuing and constant transformation. In the course of time, that possi-. If revolution disquieted, it also exhilarated. For sheer intensity of creative energies, nineteenth-century Paris had no rival.
The emerging urban discourse compelled critical strategies of accommodation to an ever-shifting milieu. Although cities had long been associated with both political unrest and intellectual innovation, nineteenth-century Paris was unique, and not least because its narratives presumed to tell the story of the modern world. The great novelists of the nineteenth century did not simply write about the Paris that they knew or hoped to know ; they confronted the human condition in that time and place, fully confident that they could fix the meaning of the largest transformations through the multifaceted phenomena of revolution and urbanization.
Their narratives of the modern city also transcribe an emerging modernism. The fragmentation of vision, the disintegration of experience, the primacy of individual expression over collective belief—these are the signs that mark these novels as chronicles of the modern. These works are, in consequence, essential to an appreciation of both the urban setting and the changing form of the novel. Yet, for all the modernity that twentieth-century readers recognize in them, these works are very much of their century.
The fragmentation of vision is countered by an assumption of narrative authority, an authority that rests, I shall argue, in the assumed role that revolution plays in narrative. Revolution was a virtuoso metaphor that gave the nineteenth-century city and also the nineteenth-century novel an originary source, a dramatic contemporary context, and an interpretive model.
It could explain the city and make sense of its apparent contradictions. It could comprehend the city as a whole. Since revolution related at once to the past, the present, and the future, it touched every aspect of politics, society, and culture. Specific political assessments aside, revolution was imagined very differently depending on whether revolution was grasped as the historical events that followed more or less directly upon ; perceived as the contemporary and continuous political agitation that brought into being the regimes of , , , , and ; or, yet again, filtered through the fears and hopes of dramatic change still to come.
At issue in every explication were the connections between the several dimensions of revolution. How were the changes of regime tied to the escalating impact of industrial capitalism? That there were connections was obvious to the most indifferent observer, but the exact nature and meaning of the linkages were a subject of great debate. The choices within the vast semantic and sociological field of revolution charted the range of both literary options and political positions from the beginning to the end of the century.
The indissoluble connection between literature and politics was already a commonplace when, in , the vicomte de Bonald made his celebrated proclamation that "literature is the expression of society as language is the expression of man. The connection became almost an article of faith for the century that followed, regardless of political or aesthetic position.
Revolution on the street, revolution on the page—the two were inevitably found together, even if the relations were far from transparent and the correlation was often indirect. Attitudes toward revolution are always problematic, but in nineteenth-century Paris they were as consuming as they were at least in part because they were also confused. Passionate involvement with revolution in its many guises turned Paris into an engrossing object of cultural speculation.
As a result, the city comprised much more than the subject and backdrop that it had provided for writers and painters for close to six centuries. The great social and political reconfiguration that followed upon bestowed upon the city a status that it held for a century: The capaciousness of the concept made both its literary and its sociological fortune. Revolution proposed such a seductive model for literary interpretation because it constructed social change simultaneously as a function of time and of space, the very elements that form the foundation of any narrative.
Revolution is the perfect chron-. Understanding how chronotopes work in particular texts is fundamental, Bakhtin argues, to figuring out how genres work. For in rendering the triangulation of time, space, and text, revolution suggests the decisive context for thinking about the city in nineteenth-century France. A three-way definition of self, society, and political identity is always at work in the nineteenth-century authors who write about Paris, and the controlling frame of reference is invariably the place that each constructs in a revolutionary tradition.
Whether present or repressed, implicit or explicit, revolution determines what Benjamin calls the "time-space" and the "dreamtime" that define nineteenth-century Paris. Any appreciation of revolution as paradigmatic chronotope must be an interdisciplinary process.
Literary criticism, historical interpretation, and sociological placement join in any realization of the symbol system that is constructed in and around nineteenth-century Paris, and it helps to keep these disciplines in play in our own awareness of nineteenthcentury conflations. The genres that work out these historical and spatial interconnections most fully are the journalistic essay and the novel, which together constitute something of a "collective autobiography" of Paris and Parisians as they confronted a rapidly changing world for which they were often ill prepared.
These profoundly urban genres make the city itself into a revolutionary text. To speak of an "urban genre" or a "revolutionary text" is to do more than indulge in metaphor. Or rather, this particular metaphor takes on a theoretical life of its own. If reading the city has become a commonplace, we do well to remember that we are able to undertake such readings, as Michel de Certeau reminds us, only because of the properties the urban text shares with written or more specifically literary texts. Each exhibits the contest between fabrication and interpretation; each exemplifies the shifting affinities between text and intertexts.
Moreover, reading urban space in terms of a literary narrative comes easily to nineteenth-century Parisians who struggle with the vitality of revolution in order to represent, to explain, and, finally, to make sense of their city. The power of what is in sum a political aesthetic lies precisely in the expression these works give to a collective memory or tradition.
At the same time, these texts anchor and thereby perpetuate that memory. They provide a "social frame," to take Maurice Halbwachs' term, on which society hangs its beliefs and its practices. But, as Halbwachs also argues, the social memory—in this case, revolution—remains alive only to the extent that it is reactivated by and through current social structures. Revolution was contemporary in nineteenth-century France not only because of the recurrent political conflict and the repeated changes of regime but also because so many texts supplied a continuous social frame and literary narrative for the revolutionary tradition.
These works were not the only means of communication, and it is certainly true that they rely on other kinds of social frames that also kept revolution alive. Even so, I shall argue, the power of these texts lies in their capacity to mobilize revolution in the present—even, at far remove, today. In the construction of revolution and in the elaboration of the symbol system attached to Paris, the texts examined in Paris as Revolution played a critical role for contemporaries, and to the extent that these texts are read still, they perpetuate revolutionary Paris a century and more later.
To the degree that the Revolution remains a touchstone in French culture a matter of much current debate , these texts will resonate within that culture. They, in turn, will have something to do with keeping revolution alive. Much of the power of these works derives from the sense of authority that they radiate. These writers are confident that they can know Paris. For them, the city is readable, and they write within this conviction of legibility. But this faith—and it is indeed a faith—makes all of these writers figures of the nineteenth century. There is, of course, much criticism, both of individual writers and of nineteenth-century fiction more generally, that rightly stresses the complexity of representation and the awareness of these writers of that complexity.
The urban narrative that I identify in effect mediates between the necessarily simplifying perspective of the controlling author the "bird's-eye view" of the omniscient narrator and the muddled, fragmentary perspective from within the labyrinth of the city the incomplete, obscure point of view of the protagonists in these works.
For the writers of revolutionary Paris, the possibility of knowledge of the city, its fundamental knowability, is a requisite article of faith. When Paris ceases to appear knowable, as it does by the end of the century, when revolution no longer offers an explanatory principle but becomes one of many available images in the cultural archive, this revolutionary tradition comes to an end. At that point, revolutionary energies turn in other directions, twentieth-century journalists and novelists look to other models and other aesthetics, and they imagine other cities.
Paris as Revolution follows these urban narratives from the First to the Third Republics, from the expansion of the city beginning in the First Empire to the demolition and reconstruction during the Second Empire, from the political triumphs of and to the revolutionary defeats of and , and to the Dreyfus affair at the end of the century. The political parallels are not fortuitous. Each of these major events redefined Paris, its topography, its soci-.
Each of the chapters below analyzes this nexus of the political, the cultural, and the iconographical at a particular historical moment. I shall not have much to say about the actual alterations of the topography or the political or social landscape of Paris over the nineteenth century because I am concerned above all with the means by which that landscape was understood and with the rhetorical frame that conveyed this understanding. I want to know how Paris was represented and how Paris was known. The most obvious change in Paris appears in urban iconography, and particularly in the names by which the city represented itself.
As the monarchy had claimed symbolic authority over the city by imposing its favored names, so the revolutionaries of the s contested that authority by proposing their own politically correct names and images to control the stage upon which revolution was to play itself out. The strident battles over nomination and representation, which recurred at every stage of revolutionary change in Paris, underline the issue of ideological control that will emerge in a more muted form in literary and journalistic writing.
The literary guidebooks that proliferated from the beginning of the century worked to secure the transformed and ever-transforming social landscape. A crucially important genre in the writing about the city in the nineteenth century, these proto-novels of the city responded to the new Paris that demanded to be named, defined, and explored, enterprises that became increasingly problematic as the city itself was reconfigured. The guidebooks of nineteenth-century Paris reached for images that would render a larger meaning in narratives that were consciously partial and soon outdated.
Whereas the guidebooks wander about Paris and ramble over the text, the novel aimed for rhetorical control. To clarify how the novel commanded the revolutionary city, I have focused on a number of classic writers and texts, each of which confronted Paris at a moment of political crisis, at a time when revolutionary hopes fell. Finally, Zola, in the novel named simply, but superbly, Paris, confronted the city as it faced the twentieth century.
These times of political crisis accentuate the inevitable disparity between the vision of a city and urban realities, between the dream of political change and the actuality of politics. Representations of the city, too, are caught in discrepancy, between the emblems that work to fix the image of the city and the narratives that endeavor to capture its movement. For nineteenth-century Paris, revolution afforded a dynamic principle, at once a principle of explanation and of representation, simultaneously vision and reality.
Static representations of the city—the names, the seals, the icons—remain locked in the past, attached to a particular moment in time and to a particular definition of revolution. The great works of urban narrative, however, conceive revolution as an active narrative force. For these writers revolution did not pose a problem so much as challenge their powers of representation. They needed, and they created, the kind of narratives in which Benjamin's time-space and dream-time could become one. In the process, they gave artistic force to the legendary verdict handed down by Emperor Charles V in that Paris is not a city but a world.
For close to a century, this number has preoccupied the human race. It contains the whole phenomenon of modernity. The Revolution made Paris unique among the great cities of the world. Other cities may be more impressive, more important, more beautiful, but none can claim revolution as its very principle. For the whole of the nineteenth century, Paris could make that claim, and it did. The storming of the Bastille in the northeast corner of the city on the 14th of July announced the first modern revolution, and the perception of the modernity of the phenomenon has a great deal to do with the decidedly urban character of the most central events of the s.
The Revolution played out in an urban spectacle of unparalleled and willful drama. Revolutionary governance took place in public, in the street, in the square, in the assembly hall. Its urban setting—from the trial and execution of the king to officially staged ceremonies like the Festival of Reason—set the tone of the Revolution at the time and for the century to come. Urbanity was not ancillary to the Revolution. Quite to the contrary, the role that devolved upon Paris turned out to be absolutely crucial to the profound reconceptualization of French society that followed. Neither the English Revolution of the seventeenth century nor the American Revolution of the s sought to redefine the individual and the whole understanding of society with anything like the fervent conviction that animated the entire political spectrum of the first French republic.
Still more significant in the long term, the concentration of people and the intensification of energies in the city merged revolutionary ideals into the practice of everyday life. The language of the urban center set the standard for the rest of the. Taking over cultural as well as political supremacy from Versailles, Paris determined the course of the Revolution by always being the place of revolution.
Paris could represent the Revolution because the Revolution, in its turn, remade Paris in its image. The dramatic temper of revolutionary events fixed powerful new images and associations in the city, associations that shaped public perception for the better part of a century. Paris bore the conspicuous marks of its monarchical origins. The monuments, buildings, palaces, churches, the very streets of this revolutionary city, kept in full view a social order that the new age worked so sedulously to consign to the past.
It was inevitable that revolutionaries should seek to remake the city in the image of their revolution, a Paris that reached beyond its most obvious role as the site of revolutionary incidents. The new Paris would constitute the space in which the Revolution was inscribed. In a word, Paris was meant to signify the Revolution. Altering topography offered the most evident answer to the dilemma of imposing the new city on the old, and a number of buildings besides the Bastille were in fact destroyed.
Yet, despite the visions of barbarians sacking Rome raised by the neologism vandalism, Paris saw far less destruction than some had feared and others had desired. In any case, short of building a new capital altogether the route followed by the American Republic or razing the city and starting from the ground up such a suggestion was, indeed, ventured , reconstructing Paris as the pure signifier of revolution was quite out of the question, even if one could achieve agreement on what that signifier should look like. By shifting topography to toponymy, from the relatively fixed to the inherently mobile, revolutionary fervor converged on phenomena particularly susceptible to modification.
Energies were not directed at things themselves so much as at the ways those things were conceived, perceived, and used. Rather than destroy aristocratic pal-. With their inscription of the revolution on the cityscape itself, words, names, and eventually texts, offered an immediate and economical means of turning urban space to revolutionary account. The many texts of a revolutionary urban discourse produced in effect a new, revolutionary landscape. Every regime thereafter followed this paradigm of redefinition. Each of the major political revolutions of the nineteenth century—, , —reconfigured the landscape to fit the altered structures of power.
Writers joined architects, urban planners, and government officials in molding the distinctive cultural practices of the new city. For the city was at once text and pre-text as it engaged writers in a concentrated effort of reinterpretation and re-presentation. In the very act of bearing witness to the transformations of the city, writers and their texts pushed those transformations further.
The insistent rewriting of the city was at once the result of the experience of modernity and an agent of that modernity. For the city was far more than the place where central revolutionary events occurred. Paris became the archetypical city of revolution not because the Bastille fell in one corner of the city and the guillotine rose in another but because so many different kinds of texts infused this space with an aura of revolution.
The urban discourse that evolved over the nineteenth century in the novels, the articles, and the literary guidebooks that poured into the literary marketplace sought to contain revolution and to fix change. The names bestowed on the city over the century continually revised and in revising retold the neverending tale of Parisian revolution. To create is to name. The reverse also holds. To name is to create, since nomination presupposes as it signifies the right no less than the privilege of creation. Whatever form it takes, nomination makes a primal gesture of appropriation.
The Book of Genesis accordingly. Adam's naming of God's creatures including Woman is the act that places them under his dominion. Genesis similarly insists upon the intrinsic connection between language and space. Although Adam names the creatures of the earth, God alone names the earth and does so before every other creation. Bestowed before the Fall in both instances, the first names given by God and Adam bespeak a perfect world, and every nomination since harks to this harmony between the creator and the work.
The biblical vision of nomination, with its power justified and sustained by unimpeachable authority, haunts every act of nomination. It is especially relevant to the naming of space. For spatial nominations express as they formulate a certain sense of the collectivity. More or less obviously, they fit within a larger system of representations through which the collectivity defines itself, to itself and to the world beyond. But the space that they create can open into conflict as well as community. Whose space for whose community?
These names play out the tensions between the individual and the collectivity, between the ideal and the real. While these tensions play out in every spatial nomination, they are, perhaps, most pronounced in cities. Small enough to make the whole visible and large enough to accommodate a multiplicity of parts, the modern city articulates its history in the network of names that signal possession of space. Cities require names for many purposes. They need to name the whole, and they need to name the parts. But a single name cannot comprehend the polyphonic, polymorphous, polysemic city. If it identifies, the single name offers no entry into the intricate urban text.
The ordinarily fixed name of the city contrasts sharply with the mobility, and the volatility, of the names for the parts within a city. In one sense, the single name comprehends all the others. But these others do not project an image. They tell tales, the tales of the city. Names within the city recount its history, its heroes, its battles, its culture. They spin the threads of the evolving urban narrative, woven over many years, decades, centuries. There is perhaps no better single gauge to the larger significance of these nominatory connections than city street names.
Like the other signs of urban civilization—from obvious icons like statues, monuments, and buildings to the grid of streets and districts—street. Obvious signs to the city, street names are at the same time signs of the city. Certainly, the naming of streets affords a crucial opportunity to affirm, or to contest, control of the city. It arrogates the authority to fashion the city. Beyond identifying location, names on streets socialize space and celebrate cultural identity.
They historicize the present and preserve the past. They mediate between local and ambient cultures, between individuals and institutions; they play politics and articulate ideologies; they perpetuate tradition; and they register change. In sum, street names offer a privileged field to examine the continual process of recording and interpreting the city. In the extensive notes he made for his unfinished magnum opus on nineteenth-century Paris, Walter Benjamin stressed precisely this kind of linguistic definition of space. The city, for Benjamin, accumulated a privileged class of words, a nobility of names.
Through language, the ordinary—the street—becomes extraordinary. The city thus becomes a universe of language or, in Benjamin's dramatic conception, a linguistic cosmos. Or, more modestly, a text to be read metaphorically as well as literally? Names narrativize the environment and in so doing concur in the construction of a properly urban text.
To speak of the "urban text" is to do more than indulge in metaphor. Or, rather, the metaphor makes good theoretical sense. We can read the city because of the properties the urban text shares with other texts. The one and the others display the never-ending dialogue between author and text, between text and reader. Each exhibits the contest of fabrication and interpretation; each exemplifies the shifting relations between text and intertexts. Should we object that the city has no author, we would see that the commonsensical dichotomy is open to question.
Although cities themselves are the work of many hands, planned cities have authors of sorts, and urban planners certainly have ambitions that can only be seen as authorial. Meanwhile, for the written text, contemporary criticism directs us away from the author to the many different intertexts.
Written texts, like cities, unfold through long, and often painful, processes of creation. In both cases the text changes. With cities, the basic text has to change to accommodate the requirements of new users—a dynamic not always present for the new reader of an old written text. Names make important connections between these two kinds of texts. For names appropriate the urban text much as an author marks. As the biblical model makes clear, nomination presumes authority, and it supposes as well an agent to exercise that authority.
Its many names make the city a striking illustration of the multivocality, or heteroglossia, that Bakhtin assigns to prose and, particularly, to the novel. The basic contours of the urban text as of the written text are determined by the tensions between the authority of the nominator and the interpretations continually fabricated by the users of those texts.
The heteroglossia of the text contests the authority of the author. Every reading of any text must balance the competing claims of authorial constraint and interpretive freedom. Reading the city is no exception to that rule. La ville est un langage.
Congrès et colloques internationaux - Persée
Jean Duvignaud, Lieux et non lieux. To inhabit Athens, Corinth, Siena or Amsterdam is to inhabit a discourse.
The city is a language. That streets should have names is not self-evident. For centuries, most villages and towns felt no need to name their streets, and even today a major urban center like Tokyo manages to do without them. The rethinking of urban space entailed by the naming of streets suggests a relatively extensive geographical area, a population of a certain density, and a varyingly complex array of social and commercial activities. Street names were one outcome of this re conceptualization of the urban whole. The debates over street names during the Revolution became so strident because the monarchy had so strongly marked the Parisian text.
Rewriting that text to make the city consonant with revolutionary ideals was an enterprise all the more fraught with conflict because the monarchical text proved impossible to efface. Contrary to the way the American revolutionaries were able to proceed at about the same time when they built a capital city from the ground up, French revolutionaries had to contend with the past on every corner.
No other city at the time came close to the population of Paris. By the end of the thirteenth century, the city could boast over two hundred thousand inhabitants and over three hundred streets—three hundred ten "real streets" according to the testimony of Guillot's poem Le Dit des rues de Paris. How were these early streets designated? As in older cities generally, streets in medieval Paris bore "local" or descriptive names, that is, names that made some sort of connection to the site. Consider the following names in Paris and their often tangled origins:.
Inhabitants—Anglais English scholars in the Latin Quarter , Mauvais Garcons "bad boys" or ruffians , Grande Truanderie big-time ruffians and criminals. These often colorful names satisfy on several levels. The evident link between name and space renders the name essential, a manifestation, as it were, of the space. The name justified the space, which in turn authorized the name. In the perfectly harmonious world these connections implied, signifier corresponded to signified, sign coincided with referent.
The evident connection between name and place enabled another, between place and history. In their original form, such names were so many features of a genuine popular culture. The users, that is, the inhabitants, took care of the names. But when another generation of users took over, street names shifted to reflect their use of the space. Orality makes popular culture singularly unstable, so that until street names entered the written record, they were subject to the vicissitudes of population movement and topographical alteration and to the vagaries of human memory.
Semantic corruption set in almost as soon as the original basis for the name vanished. The name that we see on the street today may have no connotative connection to the original, despite the tales that may be and usually are advanced to sustain a connection. Egyptienne, taken from the chapel of Sainte-Marie l'Egyptienne, became Gibecienne and later Jussienne; and among the most savory, Pute-y-muse Whores' Walk became the Petit-Musc Little Musk that we come upon in the fourth arrondissement today.
The list could go on and on. Moreover, so strong was the sense of placement, so powerful the belief that word and object ought to correspond, that early chroniclers of Paris made a point of tracing back through topographical and semantic changes to reestablish the authentic connection. By the early fifteenth century there was already a need to set the record straight.
The historian Guillebert de Metz, for example, had frequent recourse to the phrase "properly speaking" to disentangle the subsequent narratives and establish what he determined were the true origins of certain Paris street names. The expansion of Paris occurred along with the consolidation of the French monarchy.
Indeed, royal appropriation of the city marked the entry of Paris into the modern age. Street names were its insignia, yet another sign of royal power, a means of impressing dominion on topography itself. The force of the revolutionary reaction on the streets a century and a half later was very much a function of this initial exercise of what can be taken as symbolic eminent domain, the creation of a "sacred geography" designated by and dedicated to the monarchy.
This sacred geography was at the same time a "landscape of power" that inscribed the power relations of the larger society. In the impecunious king notified his "Very Dear and Well Loved Friends" in the rich municipality that his intention from then on was to reside in "our good city of Paris" more than in any other part of the kingdom.