Farewell, Revolution: Disputed Legacies : France, 1789/1989
The interpretation of the French Revolution has long been the most contentious issue in French history.
How the Revolution should be remembered has been the focus of debates concerned as much with France's future as with its past. Kaplan both reviews these debates and reconstructs - in sometimes hilarious detail - events leading up to the official commemoration. Bringing to bear the skills of the archival historian and the ethnographer, he masterfully explains how a particular political culture attempts to come to terms with its past. As he sketches a provocative picture of politics in France today, he has much to say about more general relationships between memory and collective identity, history and politics.
Farewell, Revolution is based on massive research, including interviews with leading players on the French cultural and political scene. Kaplan vividly describes the evolution not only of the bicentennial celebration in Paris but also of regional festivities and commemorative activities among the French Communists.
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Farewell, revolution: the historians' feud: France, 1789-/1989User Review - Book Verdict
Adieu 89, published in France in 1993, is the French version of this volume by Kaplan (history, Cornell), who has other books about 18th-century France to his credit (Provisioning Paris: Merchants and Millers in the Grain and Flour Trade During the Eighteenth Century, Cornell Univ. Pr. 1984). This volume is written in four separate sections, or books, each built around a central organizing theme. Book 1 is an excellent historiographical explanation of the dominant views of the legacy of the French Revolution. Book 2 views the production of the bicentennial celebration from the center, and Book 3 compares the center to the periphery. Book 4 deals with the commemoration in Paris. This work is very technical and is recommended only for academic libraries.--Harry Willems, Kansas Lib. System, Iola