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Title: Funerals, trials, and the problem of violence in 19th-century France : Blanqui and Raspail
Author: Dodds, Dawn Marija
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2010
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This dissertation examines funerals and trials as sites of structured and systematic left-wing political opposition. Both funerals and trials offered radical republicans an important opportunity to bypass the restrictions that censorship and anti-association laws put on publicising their agenda: large crowds were amassed, lengthy speeches were made (often viciously critical of the government), and these events received wide-spread press coverage. The theme which runs through these sites of political activity is the interplay between the accusation of violence and claims of political legitimacy. The scope of this project is contained by following the lives (and deaths) of two prominent radicals from the generation that came into public politics with the Revolution of 1830: François-Vincent Raspail (1794-1878) and Louis-Auguste Blanqui (1805-1881). Both from Southern France, they came to Paris as students, struggled to make ends meet, and became involved with the Charbonnerie in the 1820s. They emerged as political leaders in the aftermath of the Revolution of 1830, and both went on to be involved with the opposition press and political clubs. Although Blanqui spent nearly 40 years in prison to Raspail’s seven and some, they were arrested and stood trial with comparable regularity. The opportunity for political organisation and expression created by the death of notable figures reached well beyond their funerals, and statue campaigns and anniversary celebrations proved particularly important. The significance of this final chapter does not just rest on the strategic expansion of the political space created by these deaths, but on the extent to which the use of the mythology around Raspail and Blanqui went on to be used to serve different agendas after their deaths.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral