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1 October 1981
The Mind and Method of the Historian 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Sian Reynolds and Ben Reynolds.
Harvester, 310 pp., £20, July 1981, 0 85527 928 1
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... This is the second collection of essays by Emmanuel Le RoyLadurie to appear in English. The first was called The Territory of the Historian and up to a point justified its title by describing a landscape of historical investigation – rural France peopled by a ...
20 March 1980
On Historians 
by J.H. Hexter.
Collins, 310 pp., £6.95, September 1979, 0 00 216623 2
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... To write a review of a book of reviews is no simple task. It is like looking at a mirror in a mirror, as in The Lady from Shanghai, where the revolver shots are lost, finally, in the splintering glass: by dint of looking at themselves in mirrors which reflect other mirrors, neither the gunman nor his human target any longer has much idea of what exactly is going on. It was in this doubting frame of ...

Monsieur Montaillou

Rosalind Mitchison

7 August 1980
The Territory of the Historian 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Sian Ben.
Harvester, 346 pp., £12.50, May 1979, 0 85527 565 0
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by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Barbara Bray.
Penguin, 382 pp., £2.50, May 1980, 0 14 005471 5
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Carnival: a People’s Uprising in Romans, 1579-1580 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Mary Feeney.
Scolar, 426 pp., £12.50, May 1980, 0 85967 591 2
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... whole topic of population change, devising new techniques, asking new questions, and combining accurate measurement with insight into social constraints and mental pathways. Since demography is, as Ladurie asserts, one of the basic determinants of economic change, the source of ‘the immense, slow-moving fluctuations’, the enormous cycles of rising and falling pressures on supply, the French ...

Male Fantasies

Eugen Weber

10 January 1983
Love, Death and Money in the Pays d’Oc 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Alan Sheridan.
Scolar, 608 pp., £17.50, October 1982, 0 85967 655 2
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... Emmanuel Le RoyLadurie is probably the cleverest and certainly the most versatile French historian of our day. Beginning with his thèse on the peasants of Languedoc in Early Modern times, he has ranged back to the ...

Surviving the Reformation

Helen Cooper: Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

15 October 1998
The Beggar and the Professor: A 16th-Century Family Saga 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Arthur Goldhammer.
Chicago, 407 pp., £11.95, June 1998, 0 226 47324 4
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... by averages, but by survival. If you got through birth and infancy and all their hazards, you began to have a reasonable chance of a decent lifespan. The hazards were daunting, however, and Le RoyLadurie gives a graphic account of them. Thomas had his first narrow squeak as an infant in the Swiss Valais, when he wandered out from the house of the aunts who were raising him into the snow and almost ...


Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie: Who Controls Henry James?

4 December 1980
by Richard Cobb.
Oxford, 158 pp., £5.95, June 1980, 0 19 211758 0
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... These Promenades come from a man who, although he is the most hexagonal* historian in the United Kingdom, is still not recognised at his true worth south of the Channel. Right from the start of his itinerary Cobb gaily mixes everything together. He paints well-behaved Norman children such as one can only dream of meeting these days. He rides his biography backwards, he describes his period as a pion ...

Gaul’s Seven Parts

Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

3 December 1981
The Youth of Vichy France 
by W.D. Halls.
Oxford, 492 pp., £20, May 1981, 0 19 822577 6
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... creations, from this point of view, was the ‘Leadership School’ (École des Cadres) at Uriage. Another establishment of the same type became pro-Nazi, but Uriage came under the influence of Emmanuel Mounier, and also under that of the profound and enlightened patriotism of its students. So the school did a carefully controlled skid towards a consistent anti-Germanism, and towards plans for ...

Democracy and Modernity

Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

17 February 1983
The Republic in the Village 
by Maurice Agulhon, translated by Janet Lloyd.
Cambridge, 412 pp., £27.50, September 1982, 0 521 23693 2
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... In France, some years ago, a film director was making a film about the Napoleonic Wars. He enlisted more than a hundred extras to represent the French and other armies; the rate of pay for these extras was precisely the same whether they were playing officers or merely soldiers. Filming, which lasted several weeks, took place in open country, a long way from any town or village, so an open-air canteen ...


Robin Briggs: Saint-Simon and Louis XIV

26 November 1998
Saint-Simon, ou le système de la cour 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie and Jean-François Fitou.
Fayard, 636 pp., frs 160, November 1997, 2 213 59994 7
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... The Court Society (published in 1969 but essentially dating from the Twenties), whose apparent sophistication only thinly masks a simplistic argument, with a good deal of anachronism thrown in. Emmanuel Le RoyLadurie had begun to write about Saint-Simon and the Court when the Annales style of history of which he has been such a distinguished exponent was in full bloom. He has now returned to the ...

Le Roi Giscard

Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

16 April 1981
La Saga des Giscard 
by Pol Bruno.
Ramsay, 264 pp., May 1980, 2 85956 185 4
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... As far back as we can go (at least according to Pol Bruno), the Giscard family seems to have belonged to the bourgeoisie of the Auvergne. In the maternal line they were businessmen, probably of peasant origin, who later became men of law. Edmond Giscard, father of the French President, ‘came up’ to Paris at the beginning of the 20th century, attended the semi-serious, semi-fashionable lectures ...
16 August 1990
A History of Private Life. Vol IV: From the Fires of Revolution to the Great War 
edited by Michelle Perrot, translated by Arthur Goldhammer.
Harvard, 713 pp., £29.95, April 1990, 0 674 39978 1
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Women for Hire: Prostitution and Sexuality in France after 1850 
by Alain Corbin, translated by Alan Sheridan.
Harvard, 478 pp., £31.50, April 1990, 0 674 95543 9
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... own discipline has so conspicuously declined in popularity over the same period of time. Some of the credit must go to a succession of scholars, Philippe Ariès, Fernand Braudel, Michel Foucault and Emmanuel Le RoyLadurie among them, who combined intellectual power with formidable originality and entrepreneurial verve. But it is the kind of history writers like these have publicised that has been the ...


Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

3 November 1983
Léon Blum 
by Jean Lacouture, translated by George Holoch.
Holmes & Meier, 571 pp., $39.50, October 1982, 0 8419 0775 7
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... Communist message of Blum’s book A l’Echelle Humaine is dismissed in two lines on page 427 which refer to the destructive nature of the alliance with the Communists at one particular time. And Emmanuel d’Astier de la Vigerie, a pleasant man, a courageous member of the Resistance, the PCF’s dandy (or ‘talon rouge’), was certainly not, as Lacouture would have us believe, one of the two most ...

Poland and the New France

Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie

4 March 1982
... It is now seven months since the Socialists came to power in France – time enough for us to draw up an end-of-year or new year balance of their achievement. President Mitterrand, like Mendès-France, was long a staunch opponent of the Constitution of the Fifth Republic, but, despite this, he has had no trouble in adapting to the institutions bequeathed to him by de Gaulle. In terms of ceremonial ...
2 April 1987
The French Peasantry 1450-1660 
by Emmanuel​ Le Roy Ladurie, translated by Alan Sheridan.
Scolar, 447 pp., £42.50, March 1987, 0 85967 685 4
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The Superstitious Mind: French Peasants and the Supernatural in the 19th Century 
by Judith Devlin.
Yale, 316 pp., £20, March 1987, 0 300 03710 4
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... Professor Ladurie declares, near the beginning of this immensely detailed volume: ‘I hope in this study to bring to life the country people themselves.’ Such a reconstruction, he thinks, is bound to be fraught ...

Cite ourselves!

Richard J. Evans: The Annales School

3 December 2009
The Annales School: An Intellectual History 
by André Burguière, translated by Jane Marie Todd.
Cornell, 309 pp., £24.95, 0 8014 4665 1
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... as the econometric historians then emerging in the US. On Febvre’s death in 1956 Braudel succeeded him as director of Annales and the Sixième Section, and brought in a new generation, among them Emmanuel Le RoyLadurie, Jacques Le Goff and Georges Duby. The enterprise was based in new premises on the boulevard Raspail, where Braudel founded yet another interdisciplinary research centre, the Maison ...

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