Latin, Or, The Empire of A Sign

Latin, Or, The Empire of A Sign

From the Sixteenth to the Twentieth Centuries

Book - 2001
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Random House, Inc.
For almost three centuries, Latin dominated the civic and sacred worlds of Europe and, arguably, the entire western world. From the moment in the sixteenth century when it was adopted by the Humanists as the official language for schools and by the Catholic Church as the common liturgical language, it was the way in which millions of children were taught, people prayed to God, and scholars were educated. Francoise Waquet’s history of Latin between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries is a highly original and accessible exploration of the institutional contexts in which the language was adopted. It goes on to consider what this conferring of power and influence on Latin meant in practice. Among the questions Waquet investigates are: What privileges were, and are still, accorded to those who claim to have studied Latin? Can Latin as a subject for study be anything more than purely linguistic or does it reveal a far more complex heritage? Has Latin’s deeply embedded cultural legacy already given way to a nostalgic exoticism? Latin: A Symbol’s Empire is a valuable work of reference, but also an important piece of cultural history: the story of a language that became a symbol with its own, highly significant empire.

Norton Pub
For almost three centuries, Latin dominated the civic and sacred worlds of Europe and, arguably, the entire western world. From the moment in the sixteenth century when it was adopted by the Humanists as the official language for schools and by the Catholic Church as the common liturgical language, it was the way in which millions of children were taught, people prayed to God, and scholars were educated. Francoise Waquet's history of Latin between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries is a highly original and accessible exploration of the institutional contexts in which the language was adopted. It goes on to consider what this conferring of power and influence on Latin meant in practice. Among the questions Waquet investigates are: What privileges were, and are still, accorded to those who claim to have studied Latin? Can Latin as a subject for study be anything more than purely linguistic or does it reveal a far more complex heritage? Has Latin's deeply embedded cultural legacy already given way to a nostalgic exoticism? Latin: A Symbol's Empire is a valuable work of reference, but also an important piece of cultural history: the story of a language that became a symbol with its own, highly significant empire.

Book News
Though the once burning question of Latin's place in school curricula has been overshadowed by other issues, Waquet (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris) feels the need for a resolutely historical account of the language that is not a pamphlet or an exercise in special pleading. She writes a social history of Latin in the modern era, analyzing the uses made of it and the discourses concerning it. The 1998 Le latin ou l'empire d'un signe , published by Editions Albin Michel, is translated by John Howe. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Publisher: London ; New York : Verso, 2001
Description: vi, 346 p. ; 25 cm
ISBN: 9781859846155
1859846157
Branch Call Number: 477 Wag

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