Yet, as was the case with many who held similar collections, he benefitted both financially and scientifically from mercantile exploration and exchange, amassing an impressive personal fortune that spoke to his entrepreneurial initiative and sparked envy in his detractors. There is no mention of a Church, and allusions to Christ are indirect at best, but intermediaries for Contant do come in the form of the biblical, mythological, and literary antecedents that help the reader understand the rich significance of the plant and animal holdings in the garden and the cabinet.
Figure 1. Cabinet of mirabilia from the Oeuvres of Jacques and Paul Contant, Botany Libraries of the Harvard University Hebraria. The collections, often displayed in glass cases, or on large tables, were meant to demonstrate a taste for learning and sophistication as well as material comfort and success. The word cabinet comes most directly from the sets of drawers in which the samples were stored SeeFig. The problem associated with these collections stemmed from the fact that the items displayed often represented multifarious and bizarre compilations of animal, vegetable, and mineral material that ranged from the fake to the marvelously authentic.
His own cabinet contained thousands of objects, among them:. As the title suggests, the book which appeared in , gave reports on similar collections in Belgium and France. This last designation calls explicit attention to the extraordinary, if not inexplicable character of certain specimens. Figure 2. In a sense, nature becomes artificial because an arrangement of the kind represented in the image could never be realized.
What bursts forth is a floral abundance meant to overwhelm with its breadth, depth, and exoticism see Fig. The numerals are cross-referenced in the poem itself, as each specimen carries a description that elaborates its significance. Not only does the fecundity overflow the boundaries imposed by humanity, it dwarfs the animal life that ostensibly supports the vessel. Likewise, the lyric itself is not of stellar quality in that the persona of the poet is sometimes without contour, the rhymed couplets often seem stilted, and the language and imagery sometimes border on the prosaic.
In addition, the descriptive nature of the work can become digressive to the point where readers have difficulty charting the progression of the text. While the initial line certainly contains some degree of exaggeration, Contant suggests that his cabinet surpasses anything that nature itself has produced. Later in the poem, Contant does ascribe substantial credit to God and to nature for the splendor around him. All the same, he does not merely see himself as reflecting this majesty in his text.
Glory, while the purview of nature and of God, also extends to Contant himself. Toy des arbres le chef! Following the cedar are the pines from Savoy which, Contant reminds us, were reputedly used to build the Trojan horse. While nature tries to work in harmony with humankind, it does not have a willing partner. For Contant, humanity is as corrupt as it has ever been:. Humanity continues neither to see nor to appreciate the earthly paradise in which it lives. To know nature, then, is to know God and his love.
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The best means of solving this quandary is to collect and organize what is wondrous, strange, and unnerving in nature and make it intelligible to at least some segments of humanity. From a narrative point of view, there is very little transition from the garden to the cabinet. Absent are any structural indicators such as books, chapters, or other markers delineating separation in the text. Figure 3. The bat, canoe, and other exotic items from the cabinet. At this same time the poet indicates that physical aberrations are a sign of divine displeasure and might, he is no doubt fascinated by such abnormalities and knows that his audience is as well.
The development and dissemination of print culture enables the allure of the unfamiliar to spread rapidly. Whatever the case, the image in the engraving is embellished, and no such creature actually existed. In the poem, the dragon replaces the serpent in Eden whose evil persists in cursing humankind:. The fact that Contant himself has, for all intents and purposes, seized and confined the beast, should provide hope that sin and evil can be overcome.
Symbiosis occurs in that the bat receives the blood it needs to survive. While this pictorial exaggeration might seem naive and even silly, the point is to underscore the reciprocity, if not harmony, between the human and animal worlds. Two inferences readily drawn from this distich are that God has absolute power to heal, while exercising complete control over the elements of his creation. Specifically, he lists five specimens, designated as:.
These items are examples of what is now called teratology, or the study of deformities. Contant vaunts such anomalies not simply to jolt the reader, but to advance his assertions concerning divine supremacy over the universe. His authority is affirmed by the expanse, depth, and regeneration of this bounty, while his goodness is confirmed by the constant provision of this wonder and abundance despite. Figure 4. On occasion, God maintains his hold on humanity by creating monsters, but does this mean that God himself is monstrous?
For Contant, the answer to this question is no. Contant ends the poem with a shift back to the garden as if to suggest that while the internal, reserved space of the cabinet is valuable, it pales in comparison to the splendor of Nature. Originally from the plains of North America, the helianthus tuberosus is a sunflower that propagates quickly and produces a tasty root vegetable. Contant portrays the plant as resilient to the forces that menace it:. Clearly, these resistant qualities served as inspiration to a poet who saw himself as beleaguered and vulnerable.
By identifying and strengthening these links in the chain of being, Contant transcends the earth by creating art from it. Myriam Marrache-Gouraud and Pierre Martin. Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, Findlen, Paula. Goldstein, Claire. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania P, Impley, Oliver and Arthur Macgregor, ed.
Oxford: Clarendon P, Joubert, Laurent. Bordeaux: Simon Millanges, Poitiers: F. Lestringant, Schnapper, Antoine. Paris: Flammarion, Williams, Wes. Oxford: Oxford UP, Images appearing in this essay are taken from this initial printing. All of the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century original editions mentioned in this essay can be found online via Google Books.
Consequently, I refer to page numbers in the Marrache-Gouraud and Martin edition. See also Marrache-Gouraud and Martin 45— Mesnier in Poitiers. We note that while the engravings were executed by local artisans, Contant made the original drawings and kept the plates in his possession for future editions. See Printable PDF of Theobald, 46— Si nous eussions eu chacun une de ces mignardes en nostre compagnie, elle nous eust bien plus servy que celle de tous nos livres.
Although at first glance it may seem surprising to find this lyric language associated with masturbation, it is typical of Sorel to mix high and low registers and to re-write and subvert material from literary precedents. As he dreams of having sex with Laurette, his love interest, he kisses an old woman, Agathe, who is also spending the night at the inn. After he wakes up and Raymond tells him what happened, a horrified Francion says to Agathe,. In yet another episode, Francion comments indirectly about wasting life in the third book as he recounts his dream to Raymond.
In his dream, after fleeing a group of monsters, he meets a man whom he describes as malicious; the man has climbed an apple tree and not only takes the fruit, but also breaks the branches, leaving only the trunk that has no hope of producing fruit in the future. The fact that he knows this implies that they do not try to hide it and therefore feel no guilt or shame about it. The narrator explains that the main character, Orestes, discovered the practice at eleven years old:.
Orestes fears that his impotence is caused by too much masturbation in his youth. Interestingly, impotence is one of the physical consequences of the practice, along with convulsions, fatigue, and weakness, threatened by the anonymous author of a widely-circulated pamphlet about masturbation in Although Orestes is clearly frustrated by the impotence that he thinks is the result of masturbation, it is difficult to determine if he feels guilt. Jean-Louis Flandrin cites a translation of Cardinal F.
Therefore those Doctors who advise this act on health grounds sin grievously, and those who obey them are not exempt from mortal sin. Pour ne point foutre de putain, En crois-tu, pour cela, tes passe-temps sans crime? Indeed, it is nature that cries out incessantly to the masturbator, not the Holy Spirit or his conscience. Clearly, Saint-Pavin is having fun with the topic. Malherbe takes a more personal tone in a poem that describes the struggle between desires of the body and fear of sin:.
But the subject of masturbation allows this erotic allegory to be turned on its head.
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However, there is no mention of marriage in this passage. Sorel therefore foregoes one sin masturbation for another premarital sex , which his protagonist enjoys throughout the novel. Masturbatory pleasures are infinite but unlikely to produce satisfaction whereas heterosexual pleasure is teleological and definite. In this sense, Sorel engages in meta-poetic play similar to what we have seen in the poems, although it is more on the level of an indefinite writing process than in the lexical and intentional games of Saint-Pavin and Malherbe.
The pleasure experienced by the writer is mirrored by that of the reader. Another example of prolonging the pleasure provided by the novel is found in La Maison des jeux , which Sorel composed between and , at the same time he was writing Francion and Le Berger extravagant. But for Sorel, closure in fiction represents the end of pleasure, and the longer the story, the better. Becoming an enemy of the ladies means that this pleasure would no longer be available to Francion himself. In that sense, despite its overt condemnation by Francion, masturbation can be compared to the sort of unending pleasure that the writer can provide to reader and listener and himself.
Bouchard, Jean-Jacques. Les Confessions. In Journal 2 vol, t. Turin: G. Giappichelli, Harry, A.
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Mothu, and P. Debaisieux, Martine. De Vos, Wim. Flandrin, Jean-Louis. Sex in the Western World , trans. Sue Collins. Chur, Switzerland: Harwood Academic Publishers, Goldin, Jeanne. Houle, Martha. Jeanneret, Michel. Paris: Klincksieck, Serroy, Jean. Sorel, Charles. Histoire comique de Francion. Paris: A. Spencer, Catherine J. Stenger, Jean, and Anne Van Neck.
Weber, Henri. All references are to this edition, which clearly notes the variants between the , , and editions of Francion. Ouvverx, , cited in Stengers and Van Neck Antonin in the fifteenth century, and by Cajetan in the sixteenth century Both texts cite it as an example without discussing it in detail. On the relationship between Francion and Agathe, see Catherine J. Debaisieux discusses parallels in terms of content and structure; see especially 84—85 and 89— I do not consider this an example of masturbation in the text because the men are not described as experiencing any sexual pleasure.
Kanceff Turin: G. Giappichelli, 6—7. Flandrin cites Cardinal F. Goffar Lyons, Cited in La Muse lascive I also associate the passage with writing, but in a much broader sense. La Maison des jeux was published in and Printable PDF of Tonolo, 33— Comme B.
Or pour J. Jean Jehasse. Eds W. Lyroudias et R. Lopez, op. Printable PDF of Probes, 18— Libri 1, Epigrammata Graecorum. De Anima. The Complete Works of Aristotle.
Jonathan Barnes. Banderier, Gilles. Anne Mantero et Olivier Millet. Paris : Champion, Boissard, Jean-Jacques. Paris : Garnier-Flammarion, Bury, Emmanuel. Chassignet, Jean-Baptiste. Sonnets franc-comtois. Paris, Laelius ou De Amicitia. Oxford : Oxford UP, Tusculanae Quaestiones. Cambridge, Mass : Harvard UP, Dictionnaire universel. La Haye et Rotterdam, Graham, David. Papiers on French Seventeenth Century Literature 14 : 13— Koch, Erec.
Newark : U of Delaware P, Mastroianni, Michele. Antonella Amatuzzi et Paola Cifarella. Praz, Mario. Studies on Seventeenth-Century Imagery. Rome : Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura, Probes, Christine McCall. Anne L. Russell, Daniel. Emblem and Device in France. Lexington : French Forum Publishers, Saunders, Alison. Sellier, Philippe. Triomphe Triomphe 25— Doctrine spirituelle V, 1 . Science Science — Triomphe 59— Backus, Irena. Le Miracle de Laon. Bottereau, Georges. Marcel Viller et alii. IX, Dandrey, Patrick.
Gimaret, Antoinette. Extraordinaire et ordinaire des Croix. Goujon, Patrick. Houdard, Sophie. Les Invasions mystiques. Lallemant, Louis. Doctrine spirituelle. Dominique Salin. Paige, Nicholas, Being Interior. Reichler, Claude. Anne Chamayou. Histoires tragiques . Anne de Vaucher Gravili. Sluhovsky, Moshe. Believe not Every Spirit. Surin, Jean-Joseph. Michel de Certeau. Voir plus largement Dandrey. Voir de Certeau. XIX, At the close of the 17 th century, John Locke, reflecting on the misuse and abuse of words, came to the following conclusion:.
Life is a term, none more familiar. Any one almost would take it for an affront to be asked what he meant by it. And yet if it comes in question, whether a plant that lies ready formed in the seed have life; whether the embryo in an egg before incubation, or a man in a swoon without sense or motion, be alive or no; it is easy to perceive that a clear, distinct, settled idea does not always accompany the use of so known a word as that of life is.
What was true in the 17 th century may still be true today. For what is life but a concept that resists definition? Which came first, the pulse or the thought? Current debates on the beginning of life—at conception or at birth? All things have a duration, which constitutes their lives and in turn defines them. Or can life be created by living organisms only? As new as these questions may sound, they were debated in the 17 th century.
Most early modern attempts to define life were indebted to Aristotle. One recurring question, although formulated in many different manners, turned on the distinction between the living and the dead. A soul. For many philosophers, the soul is more than an attribute of human beings, it comes to define life itself. The early modern conceptual imbroglio between life and soul has survived in the equally complicated modern union of life and psyche. The classification of forms of life offered a mosaic of the great diversity of living organisms. In doing so, it recreates a whole from its many different parts.
Yet it may not help us understand the nature of life itself. Life takes on then a kaleidoscopic quality. A person de grande vie , for instance, had a great appetite for life, according to Richelet, while a person de petite vie , would be satisfied with little. In moralist portraiture, life came to define a person and their qualities, interchangeably so. Biologists, taxonomists and psychologists will agree that life is the property of all living things. Even such a rudimentary definition raises more questions than it yields answers; it shows that of all concepts few, if any, are larger than life itself.
But, as a concept, life has a history. It is a moment, or rather a succession of moments, of that long history that this volume presents. Candidate in French, also at Vanderbilt for their extraordinary insights and focused help in making the conference a success. Each submission was refereed in a double-blind process by two specialists in the field; none of whom having a manuscript of their own under consideration for the same volume. The volume is divided into a comprehensive introduction and five sections for each fairy-tale writer and her tales.
The editors also offer a lengthy explanation for how this corpus of late-seventeenth-century French fairy tales has been received from the moment of their production to the present. The tales were selected to be—and are—a representative sample of the most prominent thematic and narrative features of each conteuse, while simultaneously showcasing the variety of approaches each writer adopted with respect to length and tone.
The tales are chosen with particular attention to the plots, characters and situations, all of which complicate many stereotypical assumptions about the fairy tale as a genre. In conclusion, this book, with its ample introduction and its interesting and relevant choice of tales, is of extreme value not only for scholars and students, but also for any lover of fairy tales wishing to rediscover and understand the origins of the French literary fairy tale tradition.
I hope that the editors will consider more translations of this kind in the future. In the first chapter, Woshinsky focuses on the allegorical images of the body in Counter-Reformation writings and its imprecise relationships to gender and the soul. For some reason, this chapter has a decidedly different feel from those that follow, as though it were not part of the same thesis. Woshinsky deftly guides the reader through this labyrinthine reading with a healthy dose of humor. Woshinsky is obviously having fun with her subject, and her readers cannot help but do the same.
Another unexpected quality of this book is its bibliography. While Woshinsky engages with seminal works by senior scholars, she does not limit herself to these studies. This approach, combined with the intertextual citations throughout, creates an overall impression of a current and well-balanced study. I have very few criticisms of this work. There are some errors of proofreading: the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes occurred in and not in ; there is no English translation for two quotations on the bottom of page 92; the English translation should precede the French original in the middle of page Nevertheless, these minor points do not detract from what is otherwise an excellent analysis and a thoroughly enjoyable read.
While the book accomplishes this goal, one drawback to its comprehensiveness is that it sometimes leaves the reader wanting more on a particular play. In other respects, the completist approach is a strength. The thresholds structuring earlier plays often delimit a space of worldly power. The book concludes with a brief analysis of the resolution of the liminary aesthetic in sacred tragedies Esther and Athalie , where ambivalence dissolves under the certainty provided by an omnipotent Judeo-Christian god.
More concretely, this comparatist study has two objectives. She works through these ideas with great care and perseverance. As my listing indicates, there is considerable breadth in subject matter. While the author presents careful, thoughtful work, and shows great promise as a future scholar, the Lecture sartrienne de Racine exemplifies why a dissertation should not be published without revision. Many dissertations have been turned into books, but in order for the gap between the two to be bridged, certain important adjustments need to be made.
There are four areas in this study where the absence of such modifications is problematic. The first concerns the audience for the book. It is virtually impossible to read a paragraph without the flow of the argument being repeatedly interrupted by footnotes and quotes. The second dissertation-like feature, while not as off-putting for the reader, instead compromises the value of the study as a whole: discussion is limited to only a few texts by each author. It is never made clear whether the ideas expressed would function equally well in discussions of other plays by both playwrights.
Chapter IV, in particular, reads like a grab bag of tangentially related material. The fourth problem with the book is its structure. All four of these areas should have been addressed before publishing this dissertation as a book, and all four make the book less engaging for the reader. The careful manipulation of detail in conjunction with wide-ranging abstract thought is impressive. The patient intelligence and care that went into producing this study are evident on every page.
In conclusion, this is a careful study by a young scholar who shows much promise for the future, but the book should have been reworked before publication. Whereas previous scholars have analyzed printers as operating outside of and in opposition to the state, McLeod convincingly demonstrates their agency in lobbying government officials for favorable policies. In their dealings with royal officials, printers adopted five distinct but overlapping identities: as university men, as clients engaged in patronage networks, as businessmen, as guildsmen, and as loyal officers of the king. Far from advocating for freedom of the press, McLeod maintains that the printers themselves—initially in Paris but ultimately throughout the countryside—clamored for increased regulation of their industry by insisting upon the dangers presented by those who would seek profit from the publication of seditious works.
First, Licensing Loyalty centers on the network of printers in the French provinces, rather than emphasizing the book trade in Paris or the importation of forbidden books from abroad. Well-researched and written with verve, Licensing Loyalty is a valuable contribution to the history of the book, to the study of state-media relations, and to the history of French administration.
It sufficed to set a given work alongside the timeless archetypes of the ancient past and apply the infallible laws those archetypes teach in order to determine its character and worth. Where, then, les classiques asserted the primacy of a rational poetics of objective rules, enlightened modernes explored an aesthetics rooted in private feeling that licensed the eighteenth-century rejection of eternal verities in favor of the contingencies of empirical experience.
So long as poets focused on the representational technologies needed to create the emotional impact associated with a well-wrought tragic plot, the discourse of rules held sway. No longer was the goal of the literary work only to show us the human condition, but also it aspired to something beyond that condition. In the perspective of the traditional interpretation of la doctrine classique , this presents an apparent paradox. Pascal supplies at once the warrant and model for the story the book tells. In the encounter with the sublime we discover both truths that transcend ordinary human experience and our own equally transcendent power to do so.
With chapter 4, on Rapin, the rigorous transcendence Pascal, Bouhours, and Boileau aim for fades into the sentimentality of moral emotion. A distinctively literary mode of knowing ceases to be literary at all, opening the way for the aesthetic theories of Du Bos, where, as Delehanty argues in chapter 6, the focus on the psychology of human emotion drives out not only detailed analysis of the works of art that prompt it but transcendence as well. La Motte is best remembered today for his role in the second round of the Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns. But he was also a prolific and gifted playwright who tried his hand at virtually every dramatic and operatic genre, as well as dramatic theory.
Les Originaux , his first very work for the stage, composed at age 21, is a very entertaining comedy that gives us glimpses of his future potential. In addition, this play, destined for the Italian troupe, provides a fairly typical example of the type of comic entertainment they were providing Parisian audiences in the final decades of the century. At the same time, the comedy incorporates episodes of singing and dancing, sometimes combined with machine effects. Assaf provides a wealth of useful information that helps to explain the historical and cultural context, while identifying many of the numerous literary and musical allusions and explaining their pertinence.
However, there are some that he fails to identify. And the series of theatrical allusions in I. I suggest that the playwright who, after a series of tragedies set in Rome, chose a Byzantine subject is Campistron. Les Originaux is in many respects a first draft of his Moderne position, especially given the praise of liberty, originality, and preference for contemporary writers and taste.
Typos are rare, but three of them risk confusing the reader: a speech attributed to a wrong character II. The bibliography is short but helpful, and the illustrations, showing the frontispieces and some of the original music, are a delight. Francis Assaf is to be commended for reintroducing this charming and historically significant comedy to modern readers. The volume definitely belongs in every university library. In a letter dated August 5, , French chief of police Gabriel Nicolas de la Reynie confesses his incapacity to prevent the publication of satirical pamphlets penned by then-imprisoned aristocrat Eustache Le Noble:.
He has always found protectors and supporters who found it useful to grant this man the freedom to write on all sorts of subject matters. One cannot say how many ways he has abused this freedom, and to what excess he has taken it, nor whether he will control himself in the future. Le Noble was an extremely prolific, well-known author in his time, who published works in a wide variety of literary genres until his death in La Pierre de touche politique — : Propaganda as a Double-edged Sword. Written during the early years of the controversial War of the Grand Alliance — , the 29 pamphlets that compose La Pierre de touche politique shed light on the complexity of the publicity wars between Louis XIV and his foreign enemies.
A later passage more closely evokes absolutist theory by ridiculing political structures based upon the primacy of the head of state over the body politic. Perhaps more significantly, this critique of the absolutist model redeploys the very terminology used to denounce Louis XIV in anti-monarchical pamphlets from the same period. Le Cibisme 33, emphasis added. Here, the denunciation of papal authority masks the implicit criticism of all forms of absolute power, with the satirized object vacillating between the particular the organization of the Catholic church and the universal all absolutist political structures.
All of Europe now considers you the slave to a Tyrant who has put you in chains… but I am indeed mistaken if in a short time you do not see the fall of this Pygmy who has walked in Giant steps to the Usurpation of a Throne to which he has no right. This ambiguity between monarch, tyrant, and despot occurs elsewhere in the Pierre de touche politique collection, although the distance between William III and Louis XIV is here blurred even further. Le Festin 26, emphasis in original. Point du tout I do not therefore see anything that is safe. Not at all In addition to condemning the abuses of absolutism, the Pierre de touche politique pamphletsalso examine the viability of non-monarchical forms of political organizations in a subversive manner.
Yet the conversation shifts in a significant manner towards the end of this dialogue, with the general discussion of diplomacy turning towards a comparative analysis of monarchies and republics. Despite their discursive complexity, we have seen that the pamphlets often announce the narrative game that they are playing, inscribing the key to their political significance into the fabric of the text. They function collectively as ekphrastic machines, transporting readers into the chaos of the past and resurrecting history before our own eyes. Most importantly, they show us that Enlightenment, cognitive or cultural, does not emerge from a vacuum, but surfaces slowly as a product of dialogic exchange.
Berkeley: University of California Press, Bonnet, Pierre, ed. Paris : Editions le Manuscrit, Cherbuliez, Juliette. Mass-market paperback: publication date September Russian edition: Eksmo ; publication date tba. Quicksilver Twilight was nominated for the British Fantasy Award best novel category. Go to Quicksilver Trilogy section Go to Gallery.
Mass-market paperback edition: October Russian edition: Eksmo , October Gollancz , August Reprints : October ; second reprint: December ; third reprint: February ; fourth reprint: June ; fifth reprint October ; sixth reprint January ; seventh reprint June ; eight reprint September Reprinted September Mass-market paperback edition: November Russian edition: Eksmo , January The first copies of this edition contained a signed bookplate. Quicksilver Rising was nominated for the British Fantasy Award best novel category. Chinese edition: Orient Publishing Centre , October Czech Republic edition: Fantom Print, January Piper , November Mass-market paperback edition: Oscar Mondadori Bestsellers , November The Italian edition is also available as an E-Book.
Second Russian omnibus edition repackaged : July Spanish omnibus edition: Edhasa , publication date tba. ISBN Cover art: Chris Baker. Chinese edition: Orient Publishing Centre , August Czech Republic edition: Fantom Print, Sept Mass-market paperback edition: Oscar Mondadori Bestsellers , September Russian edition: Eksmo , August It was nominated for the British Fantasy Awards best novel category. Close Save. Journal of the American Musicological Society. Revue musicale. Nuova rivista musicale italiana. Paris, Conservatoire [in F-Pn].
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