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New in Francia Recensio
A Review of 1668: The Year of the Animal in France

In a new review in Francia Recensio, Nadir Weber discusses 1668: The Year of the Animal in France by Peter Sahlins. Click here to learn more about the book. Click here to read the full article An excerpt appears below:

“It is a true pleasure to read this book – and not only because of its rich illustrations beginning with a portrait series of important »human« and »non-human animals« of 1668 and ending with a selection of some beautiful colour-plates. Taking into account a variety of sources that have too often been studied in isolation from each other, the study offers a complex, multi-perspective, and extremely vivid picture of the debates about the animal theme in and around Paris in the 1660s. It would be highly desirable to have more studies like this on other places and periods in order to gain a more nuanced view of what Thomas Keith – in his »Man and the Natural World« published in 1983 – famously called the »changing attitudes« of humans towards animals during the early modern period. Whether or not one accepts Sahlins’ argument about the nexus between 1668, animals, and the rise of a new concept of royal absolutism – this book really is thought-provoking in the best sense of the word.”