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Individuals, Families, and Communities in Europe, 1200-1800 : The Urban Foundations of Western Society - Katherine A. Lynch

Individuals, Families, and Communities in Europe, 1200-1800

The Urban Foundations of Western Society


Published: 27th November 2003
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In this new interpretation of European family and society, Katherine Lynch examines the family at the centre of the life of 'civil society'. Using a variety of evidence from European towns and cities, she explores how women and men created voluntary associations outside the family - communities, broadly defined - to complement or even substitute for solidarities based on kinship. She shows how demographic, economic, religious, and political features of European urban society encouraged the need for collective organizations for mutual protection, and how men and women acted to fulfil this need. She also emphasises the central place that family issues played in the creation of larger communities, from the 'confessional' communities of the Reformation to the national 'imagined' community of the French Revolution. Based on original research, this is an ambitious integration of the history of the family into the history of public life.

'Much of this ground will already be familiar to demographic and social historians (though few readers will be familiar with all of it) but it is covered in a distinctively new fashion. What gives the book its originality is the context into which the material is put and the perspective which the author adopts ... a valuable and stimulating new perspective on familiar issues ... they carefully, but relentlessly, challenge some of the foundational beliefs on which modern demography is built and from which it derives its current identity within academia ... Riley and McCarthy do a good job in capturing the main flavours ... the book is clearly speaking to demographers, and about demography ... This is an important book and, in many ways, overdue. Most of the fields that identify themselves as social sciences have been struggling with the challenges of postmodernism for some time ... it presents a lively and persuasive argument for opening up a dialogue that would encourage greater reflection on the epistemological, methodological, and theoretical grounding of contemporary demography ... this new book deserves to be read by all those who study population issues.' Elspeth Graham University of St Andrews, Population Studies '... timely and engaging ... The book is clearly written and highly stimulating.' Robert Woods, University of Liverpool, Urban Studies

Preface and acknowledgements
Fundamental features of European urban settings
Church, family and bonds of spiritual kinship
Charity, poor relief and the family in religious and civic communities
Individuals, families and communities in urban Europe of the protestant and catholic reformations
Constructing an 'Imagined Community': poor relief and the family during the French revolution
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521645416
ISBN-10: 0521645417
Series: Cambridge Studies in Population, Economy and Society in Past Time
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 268
Published: 27th November 2003
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.4 x 15.4  x 2.2
Weight (kg): 0.45