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Figures et attitudes dissidentes

Eloquent Sedition: Notes toward a Genealogy of Dissidence

Timothy Hampton

Résumés

Cet article entend montrer que l’émergence d’une tradition d’écriture dissidente au xvie siècle en France va de pair avec une réflexion sur les limites et les dangers de ce que l’époque désignait sous le terme de « sédition ». Sédition est la jumelle ou encore le double de la dissidence et l’écriture dissidente prend simultanément conscience du pouvoir de l’action séditieuse et lui donne sa cohérence en la coulant dans une forme littéraire. L’argumentation de cette thèse passe par l’analyse des textes de Rabelais, Luther, Guevara, et La Noue.

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Notes de la rédaction

Une traduction française de cet article par Nadine Kuperty-Tsur suit.

Texte intégral

Printers, Peasants and Dissidents

  • 1  François Rabelais, Œuvres Complètes, edited by Mireille Huchon, Paris, Gallimard, 1994, p. 135-6.

1In Chapter 50 of Rabelais's Gargantua (1534), after the defeat of Picrochole, Gargantua makes a speech to the vanquished. He preaches charity and peace, and offers them a salary for their time as soldiers. He stresses the dangers of wars among friends and fellow citizens, and frees their captain, Toucquedillon. “Je vous rends francs et liberes comme par avant,” he says. He then plans to send them home, accompanied by six hundred knights (“hommes d'armes”) and eight thousand foot soldiers, under the command of his squire Alexandre, “afin que par les païsans ne soyez oultragez.” Having concluded his speech he then liberates his captives. Only the leaders, what the text calls “les séditieux,” are retained. These men he puts to work operating his new printing press: “aultre mal ne leur feist Gargantua, sinon qu'il les ordonna pour tirer les presses à son imprimerie, laquelle il avoit nouvellement instituée.1” War gives way to peace, enmity to accord.

  • 2  On the process of peacemaking after the Picrocholine war see Richard M. Berrong, Every Man for Him (...)

2Rabelais paints a beautiful scene of reconciliation. He offers a peaceful vision that corresponds to the ideals of many of humanist colleagues – men such as Erasmus and Colet – who advocated charity and concord as the response to the international conflicts that were threatening Christian Europe in the 1520s. Yet the scene is noteworthy for the ways in which it seems to acknowledge, from within its own irenic discourse, several factors that might seem to place that same discourse in question. Gargantua is a beloved and wise king. A few chapters earlier the pilgrims have compared him to the philosopher-king of Plato. Now he has made peace. Yet why must his new friends be protected from the local peasants: "afin que par les païsans ne soyez oultragez"? Even as harmony has been restored it would seem that the peasant class remains a danger to social stability. This menacing detail--the threat of future violence – is juxtaposed with the response to past violence, the punishment of the "séditieux" by making them labor at running the newly installed printing press. Given the close relationship in the 1520s with the explosion in new printing technologies, on the one hand, and increasing religious and intellectual ferment, on the other, Rabelais's link of the “séditieux” to printing cannot be by chance.2

3The juxtaposition of violent peasants with newly pacified neighbors asks us to think about the relationship between “dissidence” and “sedition.” When the Tunisian shopkeeper Mohammed Bouazazi set himself on fire in December 2010, thereby sparking the beginning of the Tunisian Revolution, was this a seditious act or a dissident act? We tend to associate dissidence – a term that is not particularly current in the sixteenth century – with intellectual innovation, oppositional writing, heresy, critique. Dissidence implies the manipulation of discourse, the connection to an intellectual project. Yet in the sixteenth century it was customary for those threatened by "dissident" writing to claim that it was “seditious,” or that it sparked sedition. Sedition would thus seem to be a twin of dissidence. Yet what is the relationship between the two? Peasants, it would seem, are seditious; intellectuals are dissident.

  • 3  Jean Calvin, Des scandales qui empeschent aujourdhuy beaucoup de gens de venir a la pure doctrine (...)

4Both dissidence and sedition are generally associated, in the sixteenth century, with the dangerous notion of “disorder.” Thus, just as the “seditious” Picrochole and his men retreat in “désordre” at the beginning of Chapter 44 of Gargantua, so does Rabelais's adversary Calvin refer, in Des Scandales (1550) to humanists such as Rabelais as sowing “désordre” through their rejection of the gospel message.3 What then, we might ask, is the role of literature, of learned writing practices that marshall events and words into “order,” in the relationship between sedition and dissidence? I will argue that it is the function of literature to mediate the relationship of dissidence to sedition. Dissidence can only emerge when sedition is deflected or controlled. Yet it cannot live without it. Dissidence is sedition's twin. To pursue this argument I will first discuss several accounts of violent behavior by peasants to gage the ways in which literary and philosophical writing confronts the threat of “sedition.” Then I will turn to a noteworthy example of a humanist appropriation of the figure of the peasant – not given to eloquence – for the purposes of teaching moral philosophy.

5Rabelais's concern for the “outrages” of the peasants upon the knights travelling through their territory on the way back from the war evokes the episodes of social unrest that plagued much of Western Europe in the early decades of the sixteenth century. The most famous of these events were the peasant uprisings in Germany in 1525. The German peasant wars offer a useful background to Rabelais, precisely because they touch on the new “dissident” ideologies that were then sweeping Christendom and that were enabled in no small measure by the spread of the new technology of printing that Gargantua has just discovered. The peasant wars in Germany were justified, by such theologians as Thomas Münzer, through reference to the new theological doctrines of Martin Luther. Luther's oppositional (that is, “dissident”) relationship to the Catholic hierarchy and his notions of individual emancipation were taken as the authority for social unrest.

  • 4  Martin Luther, Admonition to Peace, a Reply to the Twelve Articles of the Peasants in Swabia, in S (...)
  • 5  François Rabelais, Gargantua, in Oeuvres completes, op. cit., p. 317.
  • 6  Martin Luther, Admonition, op. cit., p. 323. The german original version gives: « Denn vo ihr gut (...)

6Luther's commentaries on the peasant wars offer an interesting insight to the ways in which “sedition” was viewed by Rabelais's contemporaries. He wrote two texts about them. The first, an “Admonition to Peace” acknowledged the oppression visited on peasants by the nobility and the Church. His description links theological error to social oppression: “it is unfortunately all too true that the princes and lords who forbid the preaching of the gospel and oppress the people unbearingly deserve to have God put them down from their thrones.”4 Luther's emphasis here sounds very much like the exhortations we find in the writings of Erasmus and, indeed, in the speeches of Gargantua and Pantagruel themselves, in support of the “living word” of Scripture. As Pantagruel promises to God as he enters battle against Loup-Garou, “S'il te plaist à ceste heure me estre en ayde […] je feray prescher ton sainct Evangile purement, simplement et entierement5”, Luther goes on to stress that the peasants must give up their violence and not presume to judge those who have wronged them. To do so, he notes, would make them no worse than Turks or Jews. He exhorts the peasants to examine their own consciences. If they are clean, “you have the comforting advantage that God will be with you, and will help you.6

  • 7  Martin Luther, Against the Robbing and Murdering Hordes of Peasants, in Selected Writings of Marti (...)
  • 8  Jean Calvin, loc. cit.

7In his second tract on the peasant wars, “Against the Robbing and Murdering Hoardes of Peasants,” Luther's emphasis on moral correction and social justice cede to a full-scale condemnation of the peasants, with the recommendation that they be punished, violently, if necessary, in order to restore peace. His change in attitude seems to be the consequence of having felt betrayed. He laments that before he could even inspect the situation the peasants had forgotten their promise to be taught by him. They “violently took matters into their own hands and are robbing and raging like mad dogs.’ What is particularly outrageous, according to Luther, is the deception that has been visited against him. At the time of his earlier text he had been led to believe that the peasants sought guidance. However, the continuation of the violence “makes it clear that they were trying to deceive us, and that their Twelve Articles [...] were nothing but lies presented under the name of the gospel.7” For Luther the problem of sedition is linked to the problem of deception. So long as the peasants were submissive to his teachings and willing to respect the “clear, plain, undeniable passages of Scripture” they were what we would call “dissident.” They stood in opposition to power, but supported by the Lutherian discourse of critique.  However the return to the “plain” language of the Scripture (which recalls Pantagruel's promotion of preaching “purement, simplement et entierement”) did not lead to peace-making, but rather to a world of deceit, deception, dissimulation, lying. This opposition between the deceits of fiction-making and the "clarity" of spirit becomes a topos of Evangelical writing. Here, again, Luther will be echoed by Calvin, in Des Scandales (1550), will note that, whereas the word of God is like the “clarté du soleil,” the errors of humanists like Rabelais and Dolet, who live in “désordre,” bring clouds to obscure that sun.8

8Luther's unhappiness with the marauding peasants is linked to a problem of language. It involves a tension between the clarity of scripture and the dissimulations of the deceitful. So long as the peasants remain close to the "clear" and "plain" language of Scripture (and are “clear” in their dealings with him), they can be supported in their questioning of authority. However once they slip into a register of deceit, as against the “clarity” of Scriptural teaching, they must be destroyed. The difference between dissidence and deceit may be a difference of how one uses language.

  • 9  Stephanus Junius Brutus, the Celt, Vindiciae, Contra Tyrannos. Ed. and trans. George Garnett. Camb (...)
  • 10 Ibid.,p. 46.
  • 11 Id.

9Luther's desire to link the peasants to the “clear” and “plain” language of Scripture, and his willingness to “teach” them, suggests that “dissident” writing depends on two conjoined elements: the claim to educate the reader and the promise of offering a re-interpretation of texts and historical events. Both of these elements return in central ways in one of the most important examples of late sixteenth-century Protestant writing, the Vindiciae contra Tyrannos (1579), in which the author advocates the overthrow of royal authority in the name of Biblical precedent. Returning to the history recounted in the Old Testament he notes that no authority of ancient Israel was ever free to act without the consent of “the whole people.” For God had not sealed his covenant with the ruler alone. If he had, any king could betray the interests of his people by entering into alliances with foreign kings. God had sealed his covenant with all of the people. Therefore, “it is lawful for Israel to resist, if the king is overturning the law or the church of God9”, concludes the author, bringing the ancient historical episode up to date. Yet he immediately answers an objection: “ ‘What?,’ you may ask; ‘Ought a whole multitude – that monster, I say, with countless heads – to rush headlong in raging fury at this problem, as it were in battle formation? What order can there be in such a mob, what counsel, what manner of dealing with affairs?’10”. The two tropes of “disorder” and lack of “counsel” return here. The author responds to this question by changing his own definitions. He answers his own question by noting that when he says “the people” he does not mean, literally, “the people.” “We mean those who have received authority from the people – the magistrates, clearly, who are inferior to the king and chosen by the people, or constituted in some other way11”.

10Obviously, we should not be surprised to find a sixteenth-century aristocrat taking care to define the frame or structure that can mediate between the terrifying “disorder” of the mob and the structures of political order. After all, we are dealing with the sixteenth century here and not the nineteenth century. My point, however, is to stress the way in which the emergence of “dissident” forms of writing involves a double movement. On the one hand, dissidence must define its adversarial relationship to established authority. On the other hand, it must define its own structures and strategies for controlling the forces of unrest that it might seem to authorize in its questioning of authority. Dissident writing needs the threat posed by seditious behavior. But it cannot co-exist with sedition. For the author of the Vindiciae, this mediation involves a turn to the central role of the magistrature. For Luther it involves defining the relationship between a discourse of “education” and the promotion of the “plain” language of the Gospel as a guide for life.

11Monsters, Natives, and Dissidents

  • 12  See Antonio de Guevara: El Villano del Danubio y otros fragmentos, ed. by Américo Castro, Princeto (...)

12Rabelais's peasants, so threatening to Toucquedillon on his way home from the war, never speak. However the same humanist culture that informed Rabelais's work also produced an influential example of a peasant voice that seems to exist on the edge between “sedition” and “dissidence.” He appears in Antonio de Guevara's El Reloj de Principes, one of the most influential works of humanist advice literature. The Reloj or Horloge des Princes, as it was called in the widely-circulated 1555 French edition by Herberay, features a series of fictional discussions between the wise Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius and his friends, about questions of statecraft and moral behavior.12 In Chapters 3, 4, 5 of Book 3 of that work, Marcus Aurelius tells his friends the story of a strange event that took place in the Roman Senate. One day, he says, "a peasant from the Danube" appeared in Rome, and delivered an impromptu speech condemning Roman oppression in Germany and asking for justice. Here is Guevara's description of him:

  • 13  Antonio de Guevara, L'Horloge des princes, trans. N. de Herbéray, seigneur Des Essars, Paris 1555, (...)

Ce paysant avoit le visage petit, les levres grosses, les yeux profonds, la couleur hallee, les cheveux herissez, la teste descouverte, les souliers de cuyre de porc espic, le saye de poil de chievre, la ceincture de joncs marins, et la barbe longue et espesse, les sourcils qui luy couvroyent les yeux, l'estomach et le col couverts de poil, et veluz comme un ours, et un baston en la main13.

13This strange character seems to incarnate the very type of the “stranger” or the “Other.” Indeed, as the description unfolds he is linked to the very flora of distant Germany; we move from a vision of him wearing “poil de chievre” to a vision of him “couverts de poil.”

14Yet his “natural” exterior is only the most obviously strange thing about him. A moment later his strangeness is redefined in terms of the disjunction between his appearance and his essence. “Pour certain,” continues Marcus Aurelius,

  • 14 Ibid., p. 180.

[...] quand je le vis entrer au Senat, j'imaginay que c'estoit aucune beste en figure d'homme; et apres que j'eu ouy ce qu'il dist, je jugeay estre l'un des dieux. […] Car si ce fut chose espouvantable voir la personne, non moins fut chose monstrueuse d'ouir ses propos.14

The peasant speaks at length and with great eloquence to the Romans. He condemns them for their lack of fairness in dealing with the Germans. He warns them that their corrupt ways will bring them to ruin. He laments that his own people have been overcome by Roman power, not because the Romans are stronger than they are, but because their own sins have made them weak:

  • 15 Ibid., p. 182-3.

Parlant à la verité, vous ne gaignastes la victoire par les armes qu'apportastes de Rome, ains par tant de vices qui estoyent en Germanie. Donques si nous sommes perduz, non pour estre couards, non pour estre debiles, non pour estre craintifs, ains seulement pour estre mauvais, et n'avoir les dieux propices, qu'esperez vous que ce sera de vous autres Romains estans vicieux comme vous estes15.

15The peasant goes on to describe the life of the Germans. They had no army because they are peaceful and have no enemies. They live close to nature, tending their flocks. They live in the country, in what would seem to be pastoral or georgic simplicity,

  • 16 Ibid., p. 185.

[...] d'amasser du gland en hyver, de sier les bleds en esté, [de] pesch[er] par necessité comme par passetemps.
Tout le plus de ma vie je passe seul ès champs, ou en la montaigne.16

Yet this evocation of the clichés of rustic literature is coupled with an expression of misery and hatred of Rome. The Germans are chaste, we learn, because they don't want to produce children who would suffer under Roman domination. Their solitude is pursued to keep them as far as possible from the Romans.

  • 17  Plutarch's "De capienda ex inimicis utilitate" is traditionally placed at the front of the second (...)

16What is striking in this description of the eloquent German peasant is that Guevara places a number of topoi of anti-aulic literature at the service of a moral and political discourse against empire. The speech has a number of resonances in contemporary political discourse. For example, the peasant's claim that the Romans should learn from their German subjects evokes Erasmus's many admonitions that the Christian kings of Europe should learn from the infidel Turks. Indeed, the general message of the passage seems to be that one can, as Plutarch had noted in his Moralia, take “advantages” from one's enemies. Here the German peasant is telling the Romans for their own good that they must reform.17

17At one level, of course, Guevara's peasant offers an instance of the topos of the “sileni Alcibiadis” that is so important to Rabelais and Erasmus. Humble on the outside, this Danubian barbarian turns out to contain a great wisdom. Yet no less striking is that he offers a model of performance that is exactly the inverse of Luther's peasants. Whereas Luther's “real” peasants must be destroyed because they are dissimulators, pretending to be what they are not, Guevara's fictional character can speak the truth precisely because he is not what he seems. Or, put differently, the peasant can speak only when he has become an allegory. In this regard, Guevara's text underscores the importance of fiction-making, of literary representation, in mediating the relationship between a language of sedition and a language of dissidence.

  • 18  As there are no authoritative recent editions of the Reloj, I have consulted the version presented (...)

18It is instructive to consider the role of the references to monstrosity, which, in Herberay's translation, reproduce literally Guevara's Spanish (“si fue cosa de espanto ver su persona, no menos fue cosa monstruosa oír su plática”)18. The man is described as an “homme monstrueux.” He incarnates the landscape, even as he incarnates that which is “unnatural,” or against the order of nature. Yet even more striking is the narrator's description of the experience of listening to his harangue as “chose monstrueuse.” It is not clear here whether this “monstrosity” is linked only to the strangeness of the experience (and thus, the common notion of the “monster” as “the strange”) or whether we are to take it more seriously, and recall that “monster” comes from the Latin verb “monere,” suggesting a warning. The peasant is a “monster” in both senses. Either way, the contrast between his humble exterior and his eloquence is essential to the scene. Without that contrast the passage would contain no power whatsoever. Because it is placed in the mouth of a peasant the truth can be spoken to power. Yet because this peasant is not a peasant, but a humanist allegory, that truth is never understood to be seditious. Indeed, his description of his own clothing, a bit later as, “ces vestements monstrueux que je porte” suggests his self-consciousness. He describes himself through the values of the Roman Senate. This suggests that truth can be spoken to power by peasants only when it is placed in the mouth of literary peasants, mediated through the traditions of pastoral literature. In this context it is no wonder that Rabelais's angry peasants never speak.

  • 19  Pierre Boaistuau, Histoires Prodigieuses, ed. Yves Florenne, Paris, Club Français du livre, 1961, (...)
  • 20  Ibid., p. 294.

19Guevara's eloquent peasant had a long history in sixteenth-century writing. He appeared again in one of the most popular books of sixteenth-century France, Boaistuau's Histoires prodigieuses of 1560. Boaistuau was a compiler. Therefore we should not be surprised to find that he steals large portions of Herberay's translation of Guevara word for word. He describes the episode and discourse of the eloquent peasant as “Complainct notable que feist un homme Monstrueux au Senat de Rome.19” This description turns the peasant into a literal monster and helps Boaistuau integrate the story into his collection of stories about monsters. He completes this appropriation by rewriting Herberay's description of the “monstrous” contrast between the man's appearance and his discours (“si ce fut chose espouvantable voir la personne, non moins fut chose monstrueuse d'ouir ses propos”) as follows: “si sa figure estoit monstrueuse, ses propos estoient prodigieux20.” The monstrous and the prodigious are blended in one moment of discursive performance.

20This framing of the discourse corresponds to Boaistuau's general moralizing tendency. Guevara's text shows the peasant ending his discourse and the Roman Senate being astonished, not only by his words, but by “le peu d'estime qu'il avoit de sa vie” – a nice neo-Stoic conclusion – before they take action to replace the Roman administration in Germany with less corrupt officials. Boaistuau, by contrast, relates that the peasant was made a patrician because of his eloquence and then enters into a long lament about the lack of such men today:

  • 21  Ibid., p. 300.

Voyez Chrestiens quelle sanctimonie, quels oracles soubs l'escorce des parolles d'un Ethnique: mais que n'avons nous aujourd'huy de tels rustiques pour reformer nos republiques chrestiennes?21

Boaistuau eliminates the several references in Guevara to “ma terre de Germanie et d'Alemagne” and converts Guevara's social distinction between German peasants and Roman nobles into an anthropological distinction between the “Ethniques” and the “Chrestiens.” Whether this is a response to the problematic nature of writing coming from "Germany" over the previous two decades (not to mention the changing relationship of the French monarchy to the German princes), we cannot know. What is clear is that Boaistuau appropriates Guevara's humanist peasant and makes him a figure of Christian admonitory discourse – a kind of Jeremiah figure come to warn Christianity of its errors.

  • 22  François de la Noue, Discours politiques et militaires, ed. F. E. Sutcliffe, Geneva, Droz, 1967, p (...)

21As we move from Guevara to Boaistuau we can see the figure of the eloquent peasant give up his identity as a figure of anti-colonial resistance and become a figure of moral improvement. Indeed, we can align him, not with the “bad” peasants whom Luther detests in his second treatise, but with those “good” peasants who desire education in his first treatise.22 The religious dimension hinted at by Boaistuau is developed more clearly in yet another adaptation of Guevara's text. This comes in the nineteenth of François de la Noue's Discours politiques et militaires,

Que la continuation des meschantes procedures de guerres et maintenant fait estimer injuste une cause juste.

  • 23 Ibid., p. 392.
  • 24 Ibid., p. 395.

La Noue focuses on the ways in which the Wars of Religion, by virtue of their violence, have sapped the legitimacy from both sides of the conflict. He notes that many military and political leaders respond to those who lament the violence of the Wars of Religion that this is merely normal, and that we should "hausser les espaules à l'italienne" and prepare to suffer again. La Noue attacks this prevailing opinion because it comes from those who are profitting from the war. No less a problem, he says, are those well intentioned people who believe that it might be possible to have a war without “rapacité, désordre, et cruauté.23” His target here might be someone like Montaigne, with his idealization of classical heroism and the “military life.” However it is not possible to have a “good war,” says La Noue, since chaos and vice have been unleashed on France. And to counter those who would justify the current wars he evokes the ravages that have been inflicted on the countryside and the peasantry, “le vilain saccagement du pauvre peuple champestre, voire qui est amy & partisan24”. The uncontrolled violence of the wars have made enemy and friend indistinguishable, leaving the peasants, especially “les pauvres, les vefves, et orphelins (qui sont si chers à Dieu),” with nothing but cries and laments. And La Noue goes on to wish that an eloquent peasant, “un semblable païsan, que celuy qui habitoit ès rivages du Danube”, would come forth as he did in the days of Marcus Aurelius. Such a figure would criticize the Christians for their sinful ways:

  • 25 Ibid., p. 397-8.

“O Chrestiens, qui vous entre-devorez plus cruellement les uns les autres, que bestes eschauffees et irritees, et entre lesquels il semble que la pitié soit morte, jusques a quand durera votre rage?25

La Noue continues for several pages, rewriting Guevara's peasant's attack on Roman corruption, turning it into a critique of the French war of religion, before concluding: “en somme, apprenez à mieux vivre.” La Noue then comments, saying of his own adaptation of Guevara: “Certainement, voila un langage fort libre, que j'estime toutefois s'approcher […] de la verité.” Truth and the free voice of the peasant at last come together.

22With La Noue's Christian peasant, who speaks eloquently against the violence visited on the common people by aristocratic ideologies of military heroism, we see the transformation of the mute violent peasants of Rabelais into figures of dissidence. La Noue offers an example – exceptionally rare in the sixteenth century – of a discourse of dissidence that blends the voice of the peasant and the moral authority of the humanist. He offers the literary alternative to a figure such as Luther, for whom the peasant can only speak if he comes to request "correction," or to the author of the Vindiciae, for whom the voice of the peasant must be subsumed in the authority of the magistrature.

  • 26  Guevara’text and the character of the eloquent peasant will have a durable fame; they have inspire (...)

23My focus in this essay has been on the voice of the peasant – on that social group traditionally associated with "sedition" in sixteenth-century writing26. Yet sixteenth-century French literature is punctuated by a number of dramatic moments in which characters who are powerless nonetheless speak the truth to those who are in power. Readers of Marguerite de Navarre will remember the discourse delivered by Rolandine to the mother who has imprisoned her in the fortieth story of the Heptaméron. No less impressive are the New World natives, in Montaigne's “Des Coches” who match the Spaniards' declaration of their desire for gold and converts by sending them on their way with this warning:

[...] c'est signe de faute de jugement d'aller menassant ceux desquels la nature et les moyens estoient inconneux; […] ils n'estoient pas accoustumez de prendre en bonne part les honnestetez et remonstrances des gens armez et estrangers.

  • 27  Michel de Montaigne, Œuvres complètes, éd. Thibaudet and Rat, Paris, Gallimard, 1962, p. 890. On t (...)

24“Voilà un example de la balbucie de cette enfance,” comments Montaigne in admiration.27 All of these dramatic moments stand at the intersection of the violence of what the sixteenth-century called “sedition” and the emergence of new types of intellectual or artistic dissidence. During a period of violent transition and upheaval such as the sixteenth century, where new social forces are questioning traditional authority yet culture lacks the institutional and generic tools to give voice to these new forces, we might see these moments of marginal eloquence--between sedition and dissidence--as the oblique expression of the mute violence that Rabelais hinted at when he acknowledged the “outrages” of the peasant wars. It is no wonder that Rabelais put the “seditious” to work at the press. He knew that sedition and literature go hand in hand.

Bibliography

25Corpus primaire

Boaistuau, Pierre, Histoires Prodigieuses, éd. Yves Florenne, Paris, Club Français du livre, 1961.

Brutus, Stephanus Junius the Celt [Duplessis-Mornay Philippe?], Vindiciae contra Tyrannos. Ed. and trans. Garnett George. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1994 ; De la puissance legitime du prince sur le people, et du people sur le Prince. Traité tres-utile & digne de lecture en ce temps, escrit en Latin par Estiene Iunius Brutus, & nouvellement traduit en François, 1581 ; reproduction en fac-similé, Genève, Droz, 1979.

Calvin, Jean, Des scandales qui empeschent aujourdhuy beaucoup de gens de venir a la pure doctrine de l'Evangile, Genève, Crespin, 1550.

Guevara, Antonio de, El Villano del Danubio y otros fragmentos, ed. by Castro Américo, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1945.

—, Reloj de Principes [1529](voir http://www.filosofia.org) : trad. fr. N. de Herberay, seigneur Des Essars, L'Horloge des princes, Paris 1555.

La Noue, François de, Discours politiques et militaires, éd. F. E. Sutcliffe, Genève, Droz, 1967.

Luther, Martin,  Admonition to Peace, a Reply to the Twelve Articles of the Peasants in Swabia, in Selected Writings of Martin Luther, 1523-1526, ed. Tappert Theodore G, Minneapolis, Fortress Press, 2007.

—, Against the Robbing and Murdering Hordes of Peasants, in Selected Writings of Martin Luther, op. cit.

—, Martin Luther Studienausgabe, sous la direction de Junghans Helmar et al., Berlin: Evangelische Verlagsanstalt, 1983.

Plutarque, œuvres morales et meslées, trans. Jacques Amyot, C. Morel, Paris, 1618.

Rabelais, François, Œuvres Complètes, éditées par Mireille Huchon, Paris, Gallimard, 1994.

26Corpus secondaire

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Notes

Berrong, Richard M., Every Man for Himself: Social Order and its Dissolution in Rabelais, Stanford, StanfordFrench and Italian Studies 38, 1985.

Hampton, Timothy, Literature and Nation in the Sixteenth Century: Inventing Renaissance France, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 2000.

1  François Rabelais, Œuvres Complètes, edited by Mireille Huchon, Paris, Gallimard, 1994, p. 135-6.

2  On the process of peacemaking after the Picrocholine war see Richard M. Berrong, Every Man for Himself: Social Order and its Dissolution in Rabelais, Stanford, Stanford French and Italian Studies 38, 1985, p. 18-25. Berrong stresses that the printing press must here be linked to Rabelais's commitment to education. I see it somewhat more ironically. I have explored some of the political pressures on Rabelaisian charity in Literature and Nation in the Sixteenth Century: Inventing Renaissance France, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 2000, chapter 2.

3  Jean Calvin, Des scandales qui empeschent aujourdhuy beaucoup de gens de venir a la pure doctrine de l'Evangile, Genève, Crespin, 1550, p. 87.

4  Martin Luther, Admonition to Peace, a Reply to the Twelve Articles of the Peasants in Swabia, in Selected Writings of Martin Luther, 1523-1526, ed. Theodore G. Tappert, Minneapolis, Fortress Press, 2007, p. 330. The german original version gives: « Es sey leider allzu war und gewiss das die Fuersten und herrn so das Evangelion zu predigen verbieten und die leute so untreglich bescheweren werd sind und wol verdienet haben das sie Gott vom stul stuertze. » in « Ermahnung zum Frieden auf die zwölf Artikel der Bauernschaft in Schwaben » in Martin Luther Studienausgabe, sous la direction de Helmar Junghans et al. (Berlin: Evangelische Verlagsanstalt, 1983), vol. 3, p. 115.

5  François Rabelais, Gargantua, in Oeuvres completes, op. cit., p. 317.

6  Martin Luther, Admonition, op. cit., p. 323. The german original version gives: « Denn vo ihr gut gewissen habt, so ist bei euch das troestliche vorteil das euch Gott wirt deistehen und hindurch helffen. » Luther, p. 115.

7  Martin Luther, Against the Robbing and Murdering Hordes of Peasants, in Selected Writings of Martin Luther, op. cit., p. 349. The german original version gives: « Dabei man nun wol sieht was si ihn ihrem falschen sinn geabt haben und das eittel erlogen ding sei gewesen was sie under dem namen Evangeli in den zwöllf artickeln haben furgewendet. », « Wider die räuberischen und mörderischen Rotten der Bauer. » Martin Luther Studienausgabe, vol. 3, p. 142. Luther’s orthography is here slightly modernised.

8  Jean Calvin, loc. cit.

9  Stephanus Junius Brutus, the Celt, Vindiciae, Contra Tyrannos. Ed. and trans. George Garnett. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1994, p. 45.

10 Ibid.,p. 46.

11 Id.

12  See Antonio de Guevara: El Villano del Danubio y otros fragmentos, ed. by Américo Castro, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1945. Castro (p. xiv) notes that twenty editions of the Reloj appeared in French between 1531 and 1608. I have counted another ten in English, five in German, and three in Italian, not to mention many Spanish editions. In "De l'yvrongnerie" Montaigne notes that his father had read and admired Guevara.

13  Antonio de Guevara, L'Horloge des princes, trans. N. de Herbéray, seigneur Des Essars, Paris 1555, p. 180.

14 Ibid., p. 180.

15 Ibid., p. 182-3.

16 Ibid., p. 185.

17  Plutarch's "De capienda ex inimicis utilitate" is traditionally placed at the front of the second book of his Moralia.

18  As there are no authoritative recent editions of the Reloj, I have consulted the version presented online by the "Proyecto Filosophía en español" (http://www.filosofia.org).

19  Pierre Boaistuau, Histoires Prodigieuses, ed. Yves Florenne, Paris, Club Français du livre, 1961, p. 292.

20  Ibid., p. 294.

21  Ibid., p. 300.

22  François de la Noue, Discours politiques et militaires, ed. F. E. Sutcliffe, Geneva, Droz, 1967, p. 391.

23 Ibid., p. 392.

24 Ibid., p. 395.

25 Ibid., p. 397-8.

26  Guevara’text and the character of the eloquent peasant will have a durable fame; they have inspired, for instance, the « Paysan du Danube », by La Fontaine (livre XI, fable 7), in 1678.

27  Michel de Montaigne, Œuvres complètes, éd. Thibaudet and Rat, Paris, Gallimard, 1962, p. 890. On the relationship between the Rolandine story (novel 21) in the Heptaméron and Protestant notions of the “living word” see the excellent analysis by John Lyons in Exemplum, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1989.

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Timothy Hampton, « Eloquent Sedition: Notes toward a Genealogy of Dissidence », Les Dossiers du Grihl [En ligne], 2013-01 | 2013, mis en ligne le 08 mars 2013, consulté le 28 juin 2017. URL : http://dossiersgrihl.revues.org/5553 ; DOI : 10.4000/dossiersgrihl.5553

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Timothy Hampton

Timothy Hampton, Professor of French and Comparative Literature, Chair of French, University of California, Berkeley, USA. He is the author of : Writing from History, the Rhetoric of exemplarity in Renaissance Literature, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 1990; Literature and Nation in the XVth century France, Inventing Renaissance France, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 2001 ; The Fictions of Embassy, Literature and Diplomaty in Early Modern Europe, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 2009.

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