By Robert Alan Schneider
From public executions to non secular processions to political festivities, Toulouse's ceremonial lifestyles was once remarkably wealthy within the a long time ahead of the French Revolution. In an enticing portrait that conveys this provincial urban in all its attractiveness and distress, Robert Schneider explores how Toulouse's civic and neighborhood existence was once represented within the stagings of varied ceremonies. His inquiry relies at the unpublished diaries of Pierre Barthès, a Latin show who was once either a religious Catholic and a monarchist, and who recorded 40 years of public task in ways in which mirrored the mounting social tensions of his occasions. through examining Barthès's bills, Schneider demonstrates how the diversity of ceremonial types embodied various ritual dynamics and represented contrasting values.
The writer focuses such a lot carefully at the transformations among the solemn non secular procession, which was once hugely participatory and represented neighborhood matters, and the extra celebratory pageant, which vaunted the monarchy and grew to become the folk into passive spectators. He examines the theatrical nature of frequently swiftly orchestrated non secular parades winding via local streets, then considers the monarchy's use of plazas for staged leisure, quite for awe-inspiring monitors of fireworks. Schneider argues that the competition proved a profitable device in implementing the symbols of the centralized country on Toulouse's public existence, yet that either the procession and the competition included strong ceremonial varieties that proved politically worthy for the Revolution.
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23 On the maréchaussée, see Olwen Hufton, The Poor of Eighteenth-Century France, – (Oxford, ); Robert Schwartz, Policing the Poor in Eighteenth-Century France (Chapel Hill, ); and Iain A. Cameron, Crime and Repression in the Auvergne and the Guyenne, – (Cambridge, ). ”24 Indeed, much that Barthès presents us highlights what was particular to his times: the mounting indigency against a backdrop of conspicuous luxury and consumerism, the new urbanism that began physically to transform the city, as well as the novel ceremonial forms that we shall investigate in future chapters.
25 :–. 18 19 20 21 22 23 26 :–. :–. T H E OB S E R V E R A N D H I S D I A R Y ceremonies that expressed the hierarchical values central to the Old Regime, and documenting with his woeful and vitriolic pen those trends that threatened the world he loved. Perhaps unwittingly, Barthès’s diary reveals something more about his character. As we shall see, he was painstakingly complete in his record of the many public executions staged in Toulouse; indeed, nearly a third of his entries documented the hangings, breakings on the wheel, burnings, brandings, floggings, tortures, and other punishments meted out to a variety of criminals, from murderers and thieves to whores and hapless Huguenots.
Under the pretext of begging . . ”3 Hence too his enthusiastic approval of the periodic attempts to police the poor. 4 In , the city offered the opportunity of work on a new quay as an alternative to expulsion, an offer that five hundred indigents accepted for three sols a day. 7 Despite these and other public efforts, urban poverty and mendicancy continued unabated, furnishing Barthès with a constant source of complaint. His complaint, however, was not limited to the poor. Much has been written about the emergence of a consumer :.