From Paris to Pompeii: French Romanticism and the Cultural by Goran Blix

By Goran Blix

In the early 19th century, as novice archaeologists excavated Pompeii, Egypt, Assyria, and the 1st prehistoric websites, a fable arose of archaeology as a paranormal technology in a position to unearthing and reconstructing worlds regarded as irretrievably misplaced. This well timed fantasy supplied an pressing antidote to the French nervousness of amnesia that undermined religion in growth, and it armed writers from Chateaubriand and Hugo to Michelet and Renan with the highbrow instruments had to verify the indestructible personality of the past.

From Paris to Pompeii finds how the nascent technology of archaeology lay on the center of the romantic event of heritage and formed the best way historians, novelists, artists, and the general public at huge sought to deal with the relentless swap that relegated each new current to history.

In postrevolutionary France, the frequent wish to declare that no being, urban, tradition, or language was once ever definitively erased ran a lot deeper than mere nostalgic and reactionary impulses. Göran Blix contends that this hope was once the cornerstone of the substitution of a vulnerable secular type of immortality for the misplaced certainties of the Christian afterlife. Taking the enduring urban of Pompeii as its relevant instance, and varying largely throughout French romantic tradition, this publication examines the formation of a latest archaeological gaze and analyzes its old ontology, rhetoric of retrieval, and secular theology of reminiscence, ahead of turning to its broader political implications.

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