Family, Gender, And Law In Early Modern France

Paperback | November 6, 2012

EditorSuzanne Desan, Jeffrey Merrick

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The essays in Family, Gender, and Law in Early Modern France explore how ordinary men and women negotiated power within early modern French households and continually reinvented their families in response to external forces. Larger processes, such as state building, religious reform, changing understandings of gender roles, and economic developments, influenced family practices in the areas of marriage, separation, guardianship, and illegitimacy. Relatives, gender, community, and the law imposed limits upon families but also provided opportunities for agency. Contributors investigate patterns of courtship and decisions about marriage; the financial power exercised by wives; marital conflict and related controversies about gender, sexuality, and social order; death and guardianship; and the legitimization of children born out of wedlock. While addressing a variety of topics, this volume focuses on family members as individuals with complicated agendas and strategies of their own.

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The essays in Family, Gender, and Law in Early Modern France explore how ordinary men and women negotiated power within early modern French households and continually reinvented their families in response to external forces. Larger processes, such as state building, religious reform, changing understandings of gender roles, and economi...

Suzanne Desan is Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Jeffrey Merrick is Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:304 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:November 6, 2012Publisher:Penn State University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0271034726

ISBN - 13:9780271034720

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction

1. Making and Breaking Marriage: An Overview of Old Regime Marriage as a Social Practice

Suzanne Desan

2. Marriage Choice and Marital Success: Reasoning About Marriage, Love, and Happiness

Dena Goodman

3. Family Affairs: Wives, Credit, Consumption, and the Law in Old Regime France

Clare Crowston

4. Between State and Street: Witnesses and the Family Politics of Litigation in Early Modern France

Julie Hardwick

5. Marital Conflict in Political Context: Langeac vs. Chambonas, 1775

Jeffrey Merrick

6. Gender, Kin, and Guardianship in Early Modern Burgundy

Christopher Corley

7. On the Contested Margins of the Family: Bastardy and Legitimation by Royal Rescript in Eighteenth-Century France

Matthew Gerber

Suggested Readings

Contributors

Index

Editorial Reviews

“This is one of those rare edited volumes greater than the sum of its parts. Each chapter is a fine work of historical synthesis, document analysis or close archival research. Yet, together, the essays paint a rich picture of marriage and family life in early modern France, uncovering startling new facets beneath old assumptions.”

—Jennifer J. Davis, European History Quarterly