French History discussion

Getting A Book Discussion Started For The French History Group?

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message 1: by William (new)

William (alundi) | 8 comments Hi, Oana and Nadine;

Is three enough to start a book discussion for this group? Could we exchange some ideas on titles for beginning a discussion? Without being too forward, would the following titles be of interest?

Twelve Who Ruled: The Year of the Terror in the French Revolution - R.R. Palmer

The perfect heresy : the revolutionary life and death of the medieval Cathars - Stephen O'Shea

Citizens: A Chronicle of the French Revolution - Simon Schama

The Age of the Cathedrals: Art and Society, 980-1420 - Georges Duby

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

message 2: by Oana (new)

Oana | 17 comments Hi William and Nadine,

I would be ok with a book discussion. Actually I came across another reference to The Great Cat Massacre, so I wouldn't mind finally reading that. Also, it is a bit more digestible - I am about to begin 8 months of working full time seven days a week, so I probably can't tackle bigger books for a while.

But O'Shea's book and Duby's book would also be fun eventually as I am hoping to do a medieval France tour later this year, once I finally finish my work projects. :)

(I am pleading Revolution exhaustion after a bout of interest in it that fizzled out recently. Though I might be convinced later on to read more on this.)


message 3: by William (new)

William (alundi) | 8 comments Greetings, Oana;

First and foremost, thanks for posting back. Secondly, I'm ready and willing to start Darton's book at your earliest convenience. I understand with your work commitment, (seven days a week!?!), your reading time may be at a premium. With this in mind, do you want to cover one chapter at a time every other week, or in a similar manner, or to you want to have a series of discussions on different threads once we've both finished reading?

Also, if you're looking for two shorter titles for your Medieval France Tour, might I suggest the following? Jean Gimpel's "The Cathedral Builders", Henri Pieren's Medieval Cities, and Marc Bloch's "Feudal Society"? I've always considered Bloch one of my life heroes; Father of the Annales School of Historiography, Veteran of the First World War, and after failing to secure emigration to the United States when the Vichy Republic was established during the Second World War, he joined and eventually lost his life as a member of the French Resistance. My apologies; I digressed a bit.

Please let me know what works out best for you, and when you want to begin.

Best Regards...

message 4: by Oana (new)

Oana | 17 comments Hi William, how about we start the book on February 1 or 2? Thank you for the offer of a chapter every other week - I should be able to manage that. I have seen the groups with different discussion threads for different parts of books and that may be better if I get really bogged down. Anyhow, I put in a request from my library to get a copy of the book.

And thank you for your recommendations! I'll add them to my ever growing list. :)


message 5: by William (new)

William (alundi) | 8 comments February 1st it is and a chapter every other week... I'll do the same and place a hold request with my public library as well...

Best Regards...

message 6: by Oana (new)

Oana | 17 comments Hi Melissa,

There isn't a book for discussion, though I am reading both Paris: An Adventure History and The Oysters of Locmariaquer right now. Did you have anything in mind?


message 7: by Mo (new)

Mo I am new to the group, as well as new to France. I just moved here three weeks ago. I'd love to jump in on a book discussion!

message 8: by Oana (new)

Oana | 17 comments Hi Mo,

Thanks for joining this group! How are you liking France so far?

Is there a particular book you want to read?

message 9: by Mo (new)

Mo Thanks! I am loving France so far! I have read a few current books about France and life in France. I am tackling Les Miserables right now, but otherwise, I don't have anything in mind and would be open to just about anything. I have already ordered a few of the books previously mentioned in this thread, as I'm not very familiar with the historical aspects.

message 10: by Oana (new)

Oana | 17 comments Let me know what you want to read and I'd love to join in, if I can get the book. It may take me a little longer to read the book as I work six days a week, but I eventually get to it...

message 11: by Mo (new)

Mo I'm open to anything at this point. I just finished both Les Miserables and The Hunchback of Notre Dame and really enjoyed both of them. I would especially appreciate anything that I could easily get on my Kindle :). Thoughts?

message 12: by Grizel (new)

Grizel (grizelsandilands) | 1 comments If it's of any interest, I'm currently reading `The Accursed Kings', Maurice Druon's series on the kings of France in the fourteenth century. The author was a member of the French Academy who died a couple of years ago, and I think the books were quite popular in France at one point.So far, I've read the first two, `The Iron King' and `The Strangled Queen.' Lots of murder, intrigue, and fascinating little bits on politics in fourteenth century France.

message 13: by Nadine (new)

Nadine (britishfrenchhistoryenthusiast) | 11 comments Mod
Does anyone know about to put up the "upcoming" box on the group homepage? I see it on other group pages but I don't see an option in the group page options.

message 14: by Nadine (new)

Nadine (britishfrenchhistoryenthusiast) | 11 comments Mod
Okay the book is up on the group page. I actually haven't started reading it yet, but will get it this weekend. I will put up a discussion folder when we closer to the end of the month. Happy reading everyone!

message 15: by Mo (new)

Mo Nice work! I plan on starting it this weekend.

message 16: by Mo (new)

Mo Update- I did, in fact start it this weekend, but I got distracted by Dracula. I can't believe I never read this before! I'm finding it wonderfully suspenseful and gripping. I'll get back to The Unfree French: Life Under the Occupationthis weekend!

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