Divorce In A Midsummer Night's Room

762 Words 4 Pages
Darnton describes some of the reasons for the printing press journeymen to massacre the master’s cats was due to frustration stemming from basic inequalities of necessities. Essentially, the workers notice that while the cats, along with the masters, lounge throughout the days, they are working exceedingly long hours with little to no respite. Moreover, the cats are passed morsels of food from the masters. Whereas, the workers live off of rotten scraps of food and struggle to eat enough nutrients to survive. Since the masters employ the journeymen and provide shelter some food, the workers cannot openly rebel against the bourgeois. Instead, they targeted the cats as a symbol of their mistreatment and seek put the cats on trial. Eighteenth century French society, along with ancient and twenty-first century societies, are accustomed to the symbolic nature of cats. Thus, the nature of …show more content…
Darnton points out that the Montpellier shifted his definitions of “bourgeois” and “estate” throughout the 400-page compendium. Yet, the twenty-first century reading analyzing these texts is seemingly unable to divorce the Marxist definition of a “bourgeois” as someone who controls the modes of production. Therefore, Montpellier’s message is effectively lost in translation and the true effect of his observations are not critically analyzed. To Montpellier, the bourgeois includes the artisans, the apprentices and journeymen, not just the masters, doctors, and lawyers; they are all city dwellers. That is the common thread which Montpellier uses to define them. In the same vein, the roles of people are constantly changing and were just as fluid in the eighteenth century. The dynamic shifts in how people are grouped and defined is exemplified through Montpellier’s discourse on

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