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The Culture Of Power And The Power Of Culture: Old Regime Europe 1660-1789

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | The Culture Of Power And The Power Of Culture: Old Regime Europe 1660-1789.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    T. C. W. Blanning(Author)

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In this fascinating new account of Old Regime Europe, T.C.W. Blanning explores the cultural revolution which transformed eighteenth-century Europe. During this period the court culture exemplified by Louis XIV's Versailles was pushed from the center to the margins by the emergence of a new kind of space - the public sphere. The author shows how many of the world's most important cultural institutions developed in this space: the periodical, the newspaper, the novel, the lending library, the coffee house, the voluntary association, the journalist, and the critic.

This is an excellent cultural history. Tim Blanning's book explores the architectural, literary, artistic and musical features of old regime Europe and elegantly sets them within the wider landscape of domestic politics, international rivalry and the challenges and opportunities posed to rulers and states by the rise of public opinion ... impressive in scope, beautifully written and full of the jibes and wry asides which make the relentlessly growing body of work by this author so enjoyable to read ... (Mike Rapport, French Studies)

3.3 (10657)
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Printable? Yes

Book details

  • PDF | 512 pages
  • T. C. W. Blanning(Author)
  • Oxford University Press, U.S.A. (9 Oct. 2003)
  • English
  • 3
  • History

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Review Text

  • By British Academy Book Prize Judges on 12 December 2003

    Timothy Blanning's The Culture of Power and the Power of Culture tackles one of the most interesting questions in political and cultural history – how different regimes in the late 18th Century attempted to project and protect their authority by cultural, non-political and non-military means. More than any of his predecessors, Blanning focuses on music and opera as wll as on more familiar literary activities; he gives, in the process, a vivid and engaging picture of the way in which different courts enhanced their social and political standing through public concerts and opera on a grand scale. The book also provides a novel understanding of the role of the aristocracy in the creation of what is too commonly labelled 'the bourgeois public sphere'; and it culminates in a re-telling from a novel perspective of the contribution of cultural forces in the downfall of the French ancien regime. The role of a public culture in creating national and nationalistic aspirations that the sclerotic regime of Louis XVI could not accommodate is explored in an original and persuasive fashion. So that we end at a familiar destination only after taking an unusually imaginative route.

  • By John H Dagg on 10 March 2013

    Highly readable, wide ranging across all the arts. Specially good on music.Manages to be both entertaining and highly intelligent. Bravo!


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