A revolutionary career? François de Neufchâteau does well by doing good 1774-1799

Livesey, Jim (2004) A revolutionary career? François de Neufchâteau does well by doing good 1774-1799. French History, 18 (2). pp. 173-195. ISSN 0269-1191

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Why did members of the eighteenth-century French service elite become revolutionaries? This article argues that François de Neufchâteau's adherence to the Revolution is best understood as a career development, that the institution that related his public and private selves was the career. To understand how a career could propel an individual, and by extension a generation, in such an idiosyncratic direction, we need to interrogate our understanding of the idea of a career. The career was a development from the religious idea of the vocation or calling. It was a means of making individual self-assertion morally understandable and socially useful. Through an analysis of his reactions to public and private crisis the article reconstructs François de Neufchâteau's understanding of his vocation as a public man. The career of François de Neufchâteau offers a good example of how the themes of cultural and social history can be united in the study of the Revolution.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DC History of France
Depositing User: Jim Livesey
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 18:44
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2012 09:10
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/18048
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