Pierre Boaistuau (c. 1517-1566) and the employment of humanism in mid sixteenth-century France

Doukas, Georgios (2012). Pierre Boaistuau (c. 1517-1566) and the employment of humanism in mid sixteenth-century France. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This study examines the manifestations of French humanism in sixteenth-century intellectual culture, through an analysis, for the first time, of the entirety of the works of Pierre Boaistuau. An eminent French humanist writer, on whose life little information exists, Boaistuau emerges far more prolific than any previous study has hitherto recognised. Thus, on a first level, his case offers the opportunity for an exploration of the developments of French print culture at the time. In addition, careful examination of the contents of his widely circulated works sheds new light on the ways humanist themes and values were incorporated into contemporary literary production, and were used for different purposes which surpassed the mere celebration of ancient learning. Boaistuau employed seven genres in order to compile seven books of different natures, all of them however grafted onto a humanist framework. Associated with narrative fiction, Renaissance philosophy, political theory, the study of history, and natural philosophy, his works demonstrate how the classical past and the humanist values of virtue, erudition, and self-discipline were used in a variety of ways in mid sixteenth-century France: for promotion of a moralising message, praise of the French monarchy, bolstering the Catholic faith, and enhancing the understanding of the natural world.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Rolf und Ursula Schneider-Stiftung zur Förderung der Geschichtswissenschaften, The Royal Historical Society, Society For The Study Of French History
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
D History General and Old World > D History (General)
D History General and Old World > DC France
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/3239


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