4.10 Le 5 juin 1832/5 June 1832 25/5/11-29/5/11

Abaissé re-reads the novel in its entirety! All welcome, no matter whether you're reading in French or some other translation. Discussion topics for each step along the way.

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4.10 Le 5 juin 1832/5 June 1832 25/5/11-29/5/11

Postby Ulkis » Wed May 25, 2011 3:55 am

Volume 4: The Idyll of the Rue Plumet and the Epic of the Rue Saint-Denis, book 10: 5 June 1832

Chapters:

1. La surface de la question/The outward aspect
2. Le fond de la question/The root of the question
3. Un enterrement: occasion de renaître/A burial and a rebirth
4. Les bouillonnements d'autrefois/Earlier occasions
5. Originalité de Paris/The uniqueness of Paris

A discussion about the important difference between a riot and an insurrection, and the cause of the insurrections and riots in general and more specifically the cause of the insurrection of 5 June 1832.

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Re: 4.10 Le 5 juin 1832/5 June 1832 25/5/11-29/5/11

Postby MmeBahorel » Sun May 29, 2011 10:34 pm

Lots more notes this time, as we have a nerdy historical book.

Livre X

Chapitre 1
1 (the other has Jeanne): Un des principaux chefs de l'insurrection de 1832, voir plus loin, chap. 4.
One of the principal leaders of the insurrection of 1832, see further on, chapter 4.

2 (quasi-wisdom of which the bourgeoisie): Les guillemets, ici ajouté en 1860-1862, mettent à distance ce que Hugo pensait en 1847-1848, quand il se contentait encore de cet << à peu près de sagesse >>.
The quotation marks, added here in 1860-1862, put at a distance what Hugo thought in 1847-1848, when he was still satisfied with this “quasi-wisdom”.

Chapitre 2
3 (right the 14 vendemiaire): 10 août 1792 : prise des Tuileries défendues par les gardes suisses ; l'abolition de la royauté et la mort de Louis XVI s'en suivront. C'est le 13, et non le 14 vendémiaire an IV (5 octobre 1795) que Bonaparte arrêta les insurgés royalistes qui marchaient sur la Convention.
10 August 1792: Taking of the Tuileries defended by the Swiss Gardes; the abolition of royalty and the death of Louis XVI would follow. It's the 13, and not the 14, Vendémiaire IV (5 october 1795) that Bonaparte stopped the Royalist insurgents marching on the Convention.

4 (absurd against Turgot): Turgot, ministre des Lumières, remplaça aux Finances, en 1774, Terray, conservateur attaché au maintien des privilèges.
Turgot, Enlightenment minister, replaced in the Ministry of Finance, in 1774, Terray, conservative attached to the maintenance of privileges.

5 (Ramus assassinated): Ramus (1515-1572) humaniste protestant, fut assassiné dans son école lors du massacre de la Saint-Barthélemy. C'est, comme Jean Huss, une des figures du Panthéon hugolien.
Ramus (1515-1582), Protestant Humanist, was assassinated in his school during the St Bartholomew's Day Massacre. He is, like Jan Hus, one of the figures in the Hugolian Pantheon.

6 (blows of a stone): Lapidation de Môtiers (1765) d'où Rousseau, restant en Suisse cependant, gagna l'île Saint-Pierre.
Stoning of Môtiers (1765) from where Roussau, staying in Switzerland nevertheless, reached Île Saint-Pierre. [The French wiki covers it – after an argument with the local pastor, someone started throwing rocks at Rousseau's house, so he decamped to Île Saint-Pierre two days later.]

7 (sport the white cockade): Tels, plus tard, les parents de la Flécharde, dans Quatrevingt-treize.
Such as, later, the relatives of la Flécharde, in Ninety-Three.

8 (companions of Jehu): Miquelets : maquisards espagnols. Verdets : royalistes arborant la cocarde verte, responsables de la Terreur blanche dans le Midi après le 9 thermidor et au début de la seconde Restauration. Cadenettes : tresses de cheveux à la mode chez les muscadins de la réaction thermadorienne (1794). Les compagnons de Jéhu, héroïques dans le roman de Dumas (1861), furent les militants de la contre-révolution dans le Midi de la France à partir de 1794. Chevaliers du brassard : Hugo désigne ainsi ironiquement les partisanes du duc d'Angoulême, dont les gardes, en 1814, portaient un brassard vert.
Miquelet: Spanish Resistance fighters. Verdets (wiki French only): Royalists sporting the green cockade, responsible for the White Terror in the Midi after 9 Thermidor and at the beginning of the Second Restoration. Cadenette [wiki French only but with pictures]: locks of hair fashionable among the Muscadins of the Thermadorian Reaction (1794). The Companions of Jehu, heroic in Dumas' novel [wiki French only] (1861), were counter-revolutionary militants in the Midi of France beginning in 1794. Knights of the Armband: Hugo thus ironically designates the partisans of the duc d'Angoulême, whose guards, in 1814, wore a green armband.

9 (as Lafayette said): Ce n'est pas Lafayette mais la Constitution de 1793 qui dit : << Quand le pouvoir viole les droits du peuple, l'insurrection est pour le peuple […] le plus sacré des droits et le plus indispensable des devoirs. >>
It is not Lafayette but the Constitution of 1793 that says, “When power violates the rights of the people, insurrection is for the people . . . the most sacred of rights and the most indispensable of duties.” [Article 35 of the Declaration des Droits de l'homme et du citoyen.]

10 (the sublime exile): Juvénal (Satires, I, 79) dit : << Si natura negat, facit indignatio versum >> << En l'absence de talent, l'indignation fait le vers. >> Juvénal aurait été exilé à Syrène, en Égypte. L'homme des Annales est Tacite. << L'immense exilé >> est saint Jean qui composa à Pathemos l'Apocalypse.
Juvenal (Satires, I, 79) says, “Si natura negat, facit indignatio versum”, “In the absence of talent, indignation makes the opposite.” Juvenal would have been exiled at Syene [Aswan], in Egypt. The man of the Annals is Tacitus. “The Sublime Exile”is Saint John who composed the Book of Revelation at Patmos.

11 (in these question of famine, riot, Buzançais): En janvier 1847, à Buzançais dans l'Indre, des paysans tuèrent un propriétaire qui refusait de baisser le prix du blé. Trois d'entre eux furent exécutés. Voir Choses vues, ouv. Cit., 1847-1849, p. 53.
In January 1847 at Buzançais, Indre, peasants killed a landowner who refuse to lower the price of wheat. Three of them were executed. See Things Seen, op. Cit., 1847-1849, p. 53. [Wiki adds the additional details: 26 were arrested in the government crackdown, 3 were executed, and the rest were sentenced to forced labour.]

12 (period of riots): Voir IV, 1, 3 et la note 11.
See IV, 1, 3 and note 11. [rue Transnonain massacre]

Chapitre 3
13 (death of General Lamarque): Sur ces événements, Hugo emploie ses souvenirs personnels (voir Choses vues, 1830-1846, p. 133-134 ainsi que Victor Hugo raconté..., p. 501) mais, bien d'avantage, le récit de Louis Blanc, Histoire de dix ans (1843).
On these events, Hugo employs his personal memories (see Things Seen, 1830-1846, p. 133-134 as well as Victor Hugo Recounted . . . , p. 501) but, to better advantage, the telling by Louis Blanc, History of Ten Years (1843).

14 (one of Napoleon's marshals in petto): Sont in petto les cardinaux dont le pape a décidé la nomination, mais ne l'a pas publiée.
“In petto” describes the state of the cardinals of whom the pope has decided, but not published, their nomination.

15 (the government as a well-timed event): Comme une occasion que saisiraient – et que saisirent effectivement – les divers partis de l'opposition, y compris le centre gauche modéré, pour achever la révolution arrêtée à mi-chemin en 1830.
Like an occasion that would seize – and seize effectively – the diverse parts of the opposition, comprise the moderate center-left, to complete the revolution arrested in mid-step in 1830.

16 (duc de Reichstadt): Il mourut le 22 juillet 1832.
He died 22 July 1832. [Napoleon's eldest son, title given by his maternal grandfather.]

17 (the gallic cock): Le coq gaulois avait remplacé, en 1830, la fleur de lys comme emblème national.
The gallic cock had replaced, in 1830, the fleur de lys as the national emblem.

18 (after forced agreement): C'est aussi sur ce motif que le Lucien Leuwen de Stendhal est renvoyé de l'École polytechnique.
It is also on this motive that Stendhal's Lucien Leuwen is expelled from the Ecole polytechnique.

19 (the Quénisset affair): Voir IV, 1, 5 et la note 16.
See IV, 1, 5 and note 16.

20 (a red flag): Détail authentique : ce drapeau rouge était surmonté d'un bonnet de la liberté ; l'homme qui le portait – les présents l'interprétèrent ainsi – appartenait probablement à la police. C'est en 1848 que, dans une intervention célèbre au balcon de l'Hôtel de Ville, Lamartine fit adopter le drapeau tricolore contre le drapeau rouge des ouvriers et de la Révolution de 93. Depuis...
Authentic detail: This red flag crowned a liberty cap; the man who wore it – those present interpreted it thus – probably belonged to the police. It is in 1848 that, in a famous intervention on the balcony of the Hôtel de Ville, Lamartine caused the adoption of the tricolour flag against the red flag of the workers and the Revolution of 93.

Chapitre 4
21 (lay in the rue de la Perle): Chose vue par Hugo, mais lors de l'insurrection de mai 1839 dont les événements, observés de près, sont souvent transposés ici. << Dans une maison en construction, rue des Cultures-Saint-Gervais, les maçons ont repris leurs travaux. On vient de tuer un homme rue de la Perle. >> (Choses vues, ouv. Cit., 1830-1846, p. 172.)
Event witnessed by Hugo, but during the May 1839 insurrection of which the events, observed close up, are often transposed here. “In a house under construction, rue des Cultures-Saint-Gervais, the masons have returned to their work. A man was just killed in the rue de la Perle.” (Things Seen, op. Cit., 1830-1846, p. 172.) [This address is in the Marais; the street is also known as rue des Coutures-Saint-Gervais.]

22 (Jeanne's stronghold): Jeanne, déjà nommé (voir chap. 1, note 1), fut blessé, fait prisonnier et condamné à la déportation. La résistance héroïque de sa barricade est racontée par Louis Blanc dans Histoire de dix ans. Hugo s'en inspire étroitement et en transpose les événements comme il l'avait fait pour le couvent de la rue Neuve-Sainte-Geneviève.
Jeanne, already named (see chapter 1, note 1), was wounded, taken prisoner, and condemned to deportation. The heroic resistance of his barricade is recounted by Louis Blanc in History of Ten Years. Hugo is narrowly inspired by it and transposes the events as he had done for the convent in the rue Neuve-Sainte-Geneviève.

23 (this delicate situation): Hugo écrivait alors Le roi s'amuse. Voir Victor Hugo raconté... (ouv. Cit., p. 501) : << Il ne put que s'abriter entre deux mince colonnes du passage. Les balles durèrent un quart d'heure. >>
Hugo was writing then Le Roi S'Amuse. See Victor Hugo Recounted . . . (Op. Cit., p. 501): “He could only lodge himself between two thin columns of the passage. The bullets lasted a quarter of an hour.”

24 (is not easily handled): Cette image concrétise souvent chez Hugo la parole évangélique << Spiritus flat ubi vult >> : << L'Esprit de Dieu souffle où il veut >> (Jean, III, 8).
This image often concretises for Hugo the evangelical statement “Spiritus flat ubi vult”: “The Spirit of God blows where it will.” (John 3:8)

Chapitre 5
25 (and put on vaudevilles): Observation faite par Hugo, mais à nouveau, en 1839 : << Sur le boulevard du Temple, les cafés se ferment. Le Cirque olympique se ferme aussi. La Gaieté tient bon et jouera. >> (Choses vues, ouv. Cit., 1830-1846, p. 165-166.)
Observation made by Hugo, but newly made, in 1839: “On the boulevard du Temple, the cafés are closed. The Cirque Olympique is closed as well. The Gaieté holds out and the play goes on.” (Things Seen, op. Cit., 1830-1846, p. 165-166.) [The Cirque Olympique is a fashionable hippodrome; the Gaieté is one of the secondary theatres of Paris, putting on melodramas and vaudevilles.]

26 (as soon as anarchy): Chose vue, toujours en 1839 : << Au milieu de ce tumulte, on voit passer trois ou quatre drapeaux tricolores. Commentaires. On reconnaît que ces drapeaux sont tout simplement l'ornement d'une petite charrette à bras où l'on colporte je ne sais quelle drogue à vendre. >> (Ibid., p. 165.)
Event witnessed, still in 1839: “In the middle of this tumult, we see pass three or four tricolour flages. Remarks. We recognise that these flags are simply the decoration of a little handcart from which is hawked I don't know what drug.” (Ibid., p. 165.)

27 (to see Marshal Clauzel): Le maréchal Clauzel, qui tenait avec Lafayette et les députés Lafitte et Mauguin, l'un des quatre coins du drap mortuaire aux funérailles de Lamarque, avait prononcé, à la suite de Lafayette, un discours d'adieu à Lamarque.
Le mot qui lui est prêté, << Ayez d'abord un régiment >>, aurait été dit non à Carrel, opposé à l'émeute, mais à un artilleur de la garde nationale qui le pressait d'entre dans l'insurrection.

Marshal Clauzel, who held with Lafayette and deputies Lafitte and Mauguin [wiki French only], one of the four corners of the mortuary sheet at Lamarque's funeral, had given, following Lafayette, a goodbye speech to Lamarque.

28 (Lagrange): C'est lors de sa visite à la Conciergerie, en 1846, que Hugo apprit ce détail du directeur, M. Lebel : << Monsieur, on m'en a envoyé six cents ! Je les ai mis ici. Ils couchaient dur des bottes de paille. Ils étaient fort exaltés. L'un d'eux, Lagrange, le républicain de Lyon, me dit : - Monsieur Lebel, si vous voulez me laisser voir ma soeur, je vous promets de faire faire silence dans la chambre. Je lui laissai voir sa soeur, il tint parole, et ma chambrée de six cents diables devint comme un petit paradis. >> (Ibid., p. 402-403.) Mais Hugo ne précise pas à l'occasion de quelle émeute Lagrange avait incarcéré à la Conciergerie.
It is during his visit to the Conciergerie, in 1846, that Hugo learned this detail from the director, M. Lebel: “Monsieur, they sent me six hundred! I put them here. They slept hard on bales of strale. They were very excited. One of them, Lagrange, the republican from Lyon, told me: 'Monsieur Lebel, if you want to let me see my sister, I promise you to make them be quiet in here.' I let him see his sister, he kept his word, and my room of six hundred devils became a little heaven.” (Ibid., p. 402-403.) But Hugo never states which riot caused Lagrange to be incarcerated in the Conciergerie. [Lagrange is Charles Lagrange, one of the leaders of the 1834 Lyon rising.]
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Re: 4.10 Le 5 juin 1832/5 June 1832 25/5/11-29/5/11

Postby MmeBahorel » Mon May 30, 2011 4:08 am

Chapter 1
Philinte against Alceste: Characters in Molière's Misanthrope. Alceste is the title character; Philinte is his friend who keeps telling him “don't be a dick”. As wikipedia says, “Philinte represents a foil for Alceste's moral extremism, and speaks throughout the first act of the play on the necessity of self-censorship and polite flattery to smooth over the rougher textures of a complex society. Alceste, on the other hand, believes that people should be completely honest and should not put on pretenses just to be considered polite in society.” Hugo in this paragraph is characterising the required papering over of differences for the working of society as “the party of tepid water”, something best described by what it is not because it isn't really anything at all.

Jean Chouan – a far more romantic hero than Charles Jeanne.

“The establishment of Philip V in Spain” - Philip V was the first Bourbon king of Spain, and he inherited the throne according to the previous King's will. This was disputed by the third in line according to the will, the Austrian Archduke Charles, on the premise that Philip's grandmother, which was the blood connection that led to his naming as an heir to the throne, had in her marriage contract given up any right of succession to the Spanish throne for her descendants. The War of Spanish Succession is what Hugo is referencing in the 2 billion franc cost.

Obviously, Hugo prefers tearing down kings to setting them up on foreign thrones, but he is also making the point that revolutions, so long as they are not contested by outsiders, are cheap compared to wars. Though the War of Spanish Succession is such a complete mess with countries taking the opportunity to piss each other off over other issues at the same time, it's hard to say this was really fought to put Philip on the throne he had inherited.

Chapter 2
I think we can just start paraphrasing Ben Franklin to summarise this chapter. “Rebellion is always legal in the first person: our rebellion. Only in the third person, their rebellion, does it become illegal.” The actions Hugo praises as right are still factions, because “the whole” doesn't actually exist. There is no public opinion at this time that actually incorporates the vast majority of the French public, the peasantry. Once they started being given an actual vote and therefore an actual voice, the conservatives got an easier leg up. Not because the peasantry was ignorant, but because they were scared. All change had been bad for them in their experience, so of course people who are tied to weather and landlords are going to choose what they see as stability whenever possible. The weather can't be stable and predictable, so the landlord ought to be. But this is entirely of a piece with Marx setting the peasantry aside as unimportant to the revolution. Hugo's examples swing into “yeah, there's a majority in all these cases I cite, but they're wrong, so they're a faction and don't really count.” It's all just “the things I like are rebellion in the first person; if I don't like it, it's rebellion in the third person.” Drives me nuts.

Phocion – Phocion was accused of treachery and ordered to be tried by the people of Athens, who then sentenced him to death
Scipio – refused demands to become perpetual consul or dictator (and thus represented what Caesar should have done in the eyes of his detractors). At one point, the political class tried to have him brought up on charges but he played on his popularity with the people to get out of that mess.
“Alexander does for Asia with the sword what Columbus does for America with the compass” - Massacres a whole lot of people and creates a power vacuum?
Salt tax – in 1675, riots in Brittany began over the introduction of a variety of taxes. The Revolt of the papier timbré or Revolt of the Red Bonnets was the response to the central government riding roughshod over previous local liberties in order to finance a war abroad. The revolt was heavily repressed, then the king granted an amnesty and some of the offending taxes were removed. In other words, it was a revolt against taxation that had been implemented unfairly, and there was something of a victory for the protesters. (I'm skimming, admittedly, and in French, but I have a feeling Hugo is wishing the whole thing had been something else, not that it flipped about-face in its motives.)

September murders – after 10 August, mass murders and summary executions
Avignon massacres – 16-17 October 1791, Massacres of la Glacière
Coligny – Huguenot leader
Mme de Lamballe – victim of the September 1792 mob violence
Brune – Marshal murdered during the White Terror in 1815.

Hébert against Danton isn't a step backward, is it? Why is it the example that culminates the paragraph that states insurrection is forward momentum; anything else is riot? (Is it because this whole chapter is really “anything Hugo likes is insurrection, anything he dislikes is riot”?)

Help me parse this: “Jean sur son rocher, c'est le sphinx sur son piédestal ; on peut ne pas le comprendre ; c'est un juif, et c'est de l'hébreu”. John on his rock is the sphinx on its pedestal; one can *not* understand him; he's a Jew and it's in Hebrew. Right? If one “cannot understand him”, it would be “on ne peut pas le comprendre”. So it's more “it is possible to not understand him”, yes? Making sure I'm reading it right, as I was interpreting the English FMA give - “we cannot understand him” - as “because he's a Jew” and that was setting off my “possible antisemitism” buzzer. But “it is possible for us to not understand him” - “because he's a Jew” - is an entirely different meaning to me, where the “because” is showing a distance that we feel rather than one that is naturally there. Like “we can choose to distance ourselves from him” not “he is other and therefore impossible to understand”. Am I right here? It seems a difficult locution.

Verres – crappy governor of Sicily
Vitellius – obese glutton of an emperor
Sulla – (somehow did not get translated in FMA, who used the french spelling) the prototype of the dictator, the excuse Caesar could give for crossing the Rubicon
Claudius – depravity what? The man came between Caligula and Nero and governed effectively. He had bad luck with women, but nothing he himself did could count as depravity in any sense.
Domitian – described by Suetonius as a cruel and paranoid tyrant, and had some morality police pretensions. I have no idea what Hugo is talking about with Claudius and Domitian.
Caracalla – here we go, massacres – that's more like it.
Commodus – liked to fight exotic animals in the gladitorial arena
Heliogabalus – disregard for religious traditions and sexual mores, “unspeakably disgusting life”

Hugo would do better to say that insurrection relies on a moral fact to sustain itself, whether or not it sprang from material circumstances.

Masaniello – possibly came to mind as an example due to the 1828 opera about him, libretto by Delavigne and Scribe. Not really seeing a moral difference here, to be perfectly honest, though that's probably because I cannot believe Spartacus as some perfect avatar of disinterested slave rebellion.

And does any armed battle not leave the deaths of old men, women, and children in its wake? He admits it, almost, but is still in favour of insurrection. And still isn't explaining the difference by any test other than “it's what I think is right”. And then he proves it by deeming 1832 an insurrection, even though he admits that on its face, it's a riot. Because he likes it, dammit!

Chapter 3
Ludwig Snyder did exist, assuming this copy of the death notice is legit. (113? Wow. And his wife apparently lived to 105.)

The details on preparations are another example of Hugo using potentially dubious details to make his work seem accurate. These details piled up on each other pretend to accuracy, but they could come from anywhere – 1848, 1834, Hugo's imagination. They flow into something that may or may not be utter crap (what's an 80 year old German-American, a gunsmith who never missed a presidential election, doing in Paris at the time?) mixed in with what is almost certainly a real testimony of what happened on 5 June.

Chapter 4
yataghan – slightly curved Turkish sword, contemporary to the period

The Société des Amis du Peuple (SAP) was a major left-wing group. Hugo's invocation of them lends credence to everything he says, regardless of their true involvement this time around. The SAP had been officially dissolved in early 1832 after the trial of their fifteen leaders, including Auguste Blanqui, but the remnants continued unofficially.

Chapter 5
“For two years, Paris had seen more than one insurrection.” Depending on how Hugo is counting, this phrasing is an understatement. Timeline of France under the July Monarchy (French only). October 1830, February 1831, March 1831 (two separate days of rioting about a week apart), June 1831, September 1831. That's just rioting and insurrection in Paris – then you've also got the Lyon revolt in November 1831, and you've also got multiple plots, legitimist and republican, coming up and getting shut down over these two years.

Armand Carrel – republican journalist

The picture that is built up is not in the least particular to June 1832 – it could be June 1848, really, which says a lot about political violence in Paris. It's all the same since the barricades first went up in 1827: the barricades, the gathering of troops, the collection of arms, the shut-down of sectors of the city, the tourists and rubberneckers, the crowded prisons as the police start arresting anyone, and everyone just waiting for the fallout rather than the event itself. There's a sense of suspense, but it's also so completely repetitive that it doesn't matter that Hugo is recycling stories from multiple uprisings. A Paris revolt is a species of its own, and a description of one event adds to the description of all such events.

And if you don't know the novel, you're probably not all that certain about who's gonna die, even if you know Parisian revolts. Things happen behind the barricades, then some people manage to escape, some are killed in action, some are executed right there, and some end up in prison. There are four fates for any participant, and any of them could happen to our characters and still feel cliché because there are only four fates and Parisian revolts just keep happening without any change in form.

If you're new to Parisian revolt, it's probably a lot more suspenseful. I suspect a middle-aged European reader – a veteran of 1848 regardless of country – has a different feeling at the end of this book than an American or British reader would have had. (yeah, the Americans are in the middle of a war, but there's a huge difference between a war and a city riot that turns into a revolution – we don't do urban warfare in the US.)
What kind of literature and what kind of life is the same question. - Tom Stoppard


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