Who, exactly, were the French bourgeoisie? Unlike the Anglo-Americans, who widely embraced middle-class ideals and values, the French--even the most affluent and conservative--have always rejected and maligned bourgeois values and identity.
In this new approach to the old question of the bourgeoisie, Sarah Maza focuses on the crucial period before, during, and after the French Revolution, and offers a provocative answer: the French bourgeoisie has never existed. Despite the large numbers of respectable middling town-dwellers, no group identified themselves as bourgeois. Drawing on political and economic theory and history, personal and polemical writings, and works of fiction, Maza argues that the bourgeoisie was never the social norm. In fact, it functioned as a critical counter-norm, an imagined and threatening embodiment of materialism, self-interest, commercialism, and mass culture, which defined all that the French rejected.
A challenge to conventional wisdom about modern French history, this book poses broader questions about the role of anti-bourgeois sentiment in French culture, by suggesting parallels between the figures of the bourgeois, the Jew, and the American in the French social imaginary. It is a brilliant and timely foray into our beliefs and fantasies about the social world and our definition of a social class.
The history of the book in nineteenth-century Japan follows an uneven course that resists the simple chronology often used to mark the divide between premodern and modern literary history.
By examining the obscured histories of publication, circulation, and reception of widely consumed literary works from late Edo to the early Meiji period, Jonathan Zwicker traces a genealogy of the literary field across a long nineteenth century: one that stresses continuities between the generic conventions of early modern fiction and the modern novel. In the literature of sentiment Zwicker locates a tear-streaked lens through which to view literary practices and readerly expectations that evolved across the century.
Practices of the Sentimental Imagination emphasizes both qualitative and quantitative aspects of literary production and consumption, balancing close readings of canonical and noncanonical texts, sophisticated applications of critical theory, and careful archival research into the holdings of nineteenth-century lending libraries and private collections. By exploring the relationships between and among Japanese literary works and texts from late imperial China, Europe, and America, Zwicker also situates the Japanese novel within a larger literary history of the novel across the global nineteenth century.
Analyses of the work of individual artists are grouped around three major themes that Asian American artists engaged with during the 1990s: representations of the Other; social memory and trauma; and migration, diaspora, and sense of place. Machida considers the work of the photographers Pipo Nguyen-duy and Hanh Thi Pham, the printmaker and sculptor Zarina Hashmi, and installations by the artists Tomie Arai, Ming Fay, and Yong Soon Min. She examines the work of Marlon Fuentes, whose films and photographs play with the stereotyping conventions of visual anthropology, and prints in which Allan deSouza addresses the persistence of Orientalism in American popular culture. Machida reflects on Kristine Aono’s museum installations embodying the multigenerational effects of the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II and on Y. David Chung’s representations of urban spaces transformed by migration in works ranging from large-scale charcoal drawings to multimedia installations and an “electronic rap opera.”
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