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French Rural History: An Essay on its Basic Characteristics
From the Preface by Lucien Febvre: MARC BLOCH'S Caracteres originaux de l'histoire ruralefranfaise, which was originally published at Oslo in 1931 and appeared simultaneously at Paris under the imprint Belles Lettres, has long been out of print. As he told me on more than one occasion, he had every intention of bringing out another edition. In Marc Bloch's own mind this ...more
Paperback, 312 pages
Published January 1st 1970 by University of California Press
(first published 1931)
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This is a study of agricultural organisation in France from the early medieval period through to the French Revolution, in which Bloch discusses not just agricultural techniques (such as the development of ploughs which can deal with heavier soil types) but also the changing nature of social and legal norms and customs. When this book was first published, in the 1930s, Bloch's use of early modern cartographical evidence to uncover something about medieval land usage and topography was still a ...more
I came to know the existence of Annales School by the five-volume work the History of Private Life, which I read alongside with Will Durant's the Story of Civilization. This juxtaposition struck me with much amazement. Although the era and place of these two studies coincides to a great extend, the latter seemed like an extremely well-written, very elaborated history textbook, while the former work illustrated another universe, or another dimension of history. It is not textbook-ish. It is livel ...more
What a great book. And you wouldn't think so, from the title. Sounds a bit dull. But it really ends up being filled with all sorts of fascinating information (fascinating to me, that is- I think you already have to be at least slightly interested in French history). I was hoping I would like Bloch's work, and I'm glad I did...Bloch is sort of a historian hero, in a way. In the 1930s he became the best medievalist in France, and then in WWII he was executed by the Nazis for working in the French ...more
Marc Léopold Benjamin Bloch (6 July 1886 in Lyon – 16 June 1944 in Saint-Didier-de-Formans) was a medieval historian, University Professor and French Army officer. Bloch was a founder of the Annales School, best known for his pioneering studies French Rural History and Feudal Society and his posthumously-published unfinished meditation on the writing of history, The Historian's Craft. He was ...moreMore about Marc Bloch...