The Politics of Fiscal Privilege in Provence, 1530s -1830s

The Politics of Fiscal Privilege in Provence, 1530s -1830s

eBook - 2012
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Johns Hopkins University Press
Rafe Blaufarb examines the interwoven problems of taxation and social
privilege in this treatment of the contention over fiscal privilege between
the seigneurial nobility and the tax-payers of Provence. From the
1530s until the French Revolution and beyond, a series of deceptively
simple questions divided privileged from non-privileged elites in the
province: what made land noble and, hence, tax exempt; how could
land acquire or lose noble status? Aired in tribunals ranging from local
village courts to the royal council in Versailles, these questions fueled
a long-running dispute that shaped the political life of early modern
Provence, planted the seeds of revolutionary social conflict, and influenced
provincial politics into the nineteenth century.

This book sheds new light on two major fields of scholarly enquiry --
early modern state-formation and revolutionary origins -- and suggests
a new explanation for the rise and fall of French absolutism. By fostering
conflict between different kinds of local elites, taxation not only
undermined provincial cohesion and invited the intervention of royal
authority but also helped to generate the salient social antagonisms
of 1789. Although the book treats only a single province, its long-term
chronology and broad source base ranging from village archives to the
records of the central state provide a more holistic view of early modern
French history than shorter-term, Paris-centered studies.

Publisher: Washington, D.C. :, Catholic University of America Press,, [2012]
Copyright Date: ©2012
ISBN: 9780813219516
Characteristics: 1 online resource (xiii, 299 pages)


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