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Title: Textual and editorial conflict in Pascal's Pensées
Author: Dinning, William John
ISNI:       0000 0004 6498 1952
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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The history of publication of Pascal's Pensées is one of conflict and contention at many levels. This is studied in relation to four editions which have emerged from engagement with the fragmented text, each marking a milestone in the evolution of editorial practice and mastery over the work of the dead author. The text is presented as target, bystander, and agent of conflict. The first two chapters deal with motivation to publish, target readership, and the sources of conflict themselves. Chapter three examines these issues with respect to the original edition (L'Édition de Port-Royal), and the subsequent three chapters examine respectively the editions of Prosper Faugère, Léon Brunschvicg, and Louis Lafuma. The narrative charts the gradual approach to the currently accepted presentation of the fragments, and the long persistence of efforts to imagine Pascal's plan for an apology for Christianity, against a reluctance to take account of the authority of existing documents. The reception of these editions provides clues to why the Pensées have an eternal youthfulness and a constant appeal to editors. I argue that the apology lies in the fragments, however they are arranged, that all editors have accepted their apologetic intent, and that their universal significance springs from the deep sensibility they express about the human condition.
Supervisor: Parish, Richard Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Publishers and publishing--France--History ; Editors