University of Exeter Press

Ethics And Politics In Seventeenth Century France

    • 274 Pages


    This collection of twenty essays, of which five are in French, written by leading English and French literary and historical scholars, deconstructs the ethical and political framework supporting and circumscribing the actions of a powerful elite in France between the early 1600s and the final years of Louis XIV's reign. Reflecting a diversity of individual concerns, the essays, which offer a radical double questioning of the absolute values in which were founded the authority of Church, King and nobility, have been divided into two interrelated parts in acknowledgement of the complex tensions between codes of behaviour and political practice in the different theatrical spaces of government in the real and imaginary world.



    The dual political and moral theme of this study is not new, but it is one which has always been highly regarded by historians and literary specialists alike. It is in fact one of the 'classics' of seventeenth-century studies, the one to which critics must always return, and to which students must always address themselves, if they are to comprehend the intellectual core of seventeenth-century French studies.





    This collection of twenty essays, of which five are in French, written by leading English and French literary and historical scholars, deconstructs the ethical and political framework supporting and circumscribing the actions of a powerful elite in France between the early 1600s and the final years of Louis XIV's reign.




    "The editors are to be complimented for assembling this international team of scholars, who have explored a theme which is central to the cultural and political history of seventeenth-century France." French History Vol. 12, No. 3 1998 ". . .this collection contains much that will interest the historian and the literary scholar." (English Historical Review, April 1998)



    Derek Watts

    Derek Watts: A Bibliography

    Contributors


    Part I: The Ethics of Action

    Introduction, Elizabeth Woodrough

    1. 'Alternative' Ethical Systems in France during the Grand Siècle, William D. Howarth

    2. A Note on Lay Piety in the Early Seventeenth Century, John Cruickshank

    3. Guez de Balzac: The Enduring Influence of Rome, Margaret McGowan

    4. L'Image de la Ligue dans les Mémoires du Cardinal de Retz, Simone Bertière

    5. The Political Testaments of Richelieu and La Rochefoucauld, Elizabeth Woodrough

    6. Considérations morales et politiques autour d'Henri II de Montmorency: Une polyphonie discordante, Noémi Hepp

    7. Medicine and Statecraft in the Mémoires of the Cardinal de Retz, Colin Jones

    8. The Fouquet-Colbert Rivalry and the 'Revolution' of 1661, Richard Bonney

    9. Crescit ut aspicitur: Condé and the Reinterpretation of Heroism, 1650-1662, Mark Bannister

    10. Love, Marriage and a Disputed Sentence in La Princesse de Clèves, John Campbell

    11. Marie de Villars: A Political Woman?, Wendy Perkins

    12. Ascendant et déclinaison de la noblesse française dans le système de Boulainvilliers, Yves Coirault

    Part II: The Politics of Theatre

    13. Corneille: Ethic and Polis, Henry Phillips

    14. Sur l'echec des conjurés dans La Mort de Sénèque, Madeleine Bertaud

    15. 'Le poids d'une couronne': The Dilemma of Monarchy in La Calprenède's Tragedies, Guy Snaith

    16. African Temptresses and Roman Matrons: Female Roles on the Paris Stage, 1634-1643, David Clarke

    17. How Quinault uses Political Commonplaces, William Brooks

    18. Politics and Tragedy: The Case of the Earl of Essex, C.J. Gossip

    19. 'Je commence à rougir': Shame, Self-Esteem and Guilt in the Presentation of Racine's Hippolyte, Edward Forman

    20. L'influence de Louis XIV sur la vie littéraire: pour un bilan critique, Jean Rohou

    Index



    Elizabeth Woodrough is Lecturer in French, specialising in French literature of the seventeenth century, University of Exeter.



    Keith Cameron is Professor in French and Renaissance Studies, University of Exeter.